Media release

UK for UNHCR seeking urgent support for humanitarian emergency in Armenia 


LONDON, 2 October 2023 – Tens of thousands of people have fled to Armenia, as a decades-long crisis resurfaced last week. The situation has reached critical proportions, with the Government of the Republic of Armenia reporting over 93,000 new refugees arriving in less than a week.  

In response to the escalating and rapidly evolving humanitarian crisis, UK for UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, has launched an urgent appeal to help those affected. 

The harrowing scenes at the borders depict traumatised, exhausted and apprehensive people, in dire need of psychosocial support and emergency relief, including warm clothing and essential medical supplies.  

Among those arriving is a substantial number of vulnerable people, including older people, women and children. With freezing temperatures during the night and limited accommodation options, there is an urgent demand for emergency shelter support.  

UNHCR teams are working tirelessly to provide immediate assistance while closely monitoring the unfolding situation. UNHCR’s primary goal is to ensure the protection of new arrivals and facilitate the swift delivery of humanitarian aid to those who are most in need. 

While Armenian authorities are offering temporary accommodation to new arrivals without relatives in the country, such as hotels, social houses and schools, the sheer volume of new arrivals demands additional emergency centres urgently. 

Working in coordination with local authorities and partners, UNHCR has already provided crucial items such as foldable beds and mattresses. UNHCR partner ‘Mission Armenia’ in Syunik Province is housing vulnerable older people who have arrived in the past days.  

But as thousands more families are arrive by the day, urgent support is still needed.  

Emma Cherniavsky, Chief Executive Officer at UK for UNHCR, said:  

“The refugee situation in Armenia demands a collective response from the international donor community. Families who have fled their homes are in desperate need of support, and your contributions can make a significant difference in their lives. 

“UNHCR teams are on the ground, providing immediate support. We need to make sure people arriving in Armenia are protected and humanitarian assistance can reach those who need it the most.” 

UNHCR urgently calls on the international donor community for solidarity and responsibility sharing to enable Armenia to respond to this unfolding humanitarian emergency. 

For more information on how you can help or to make a donation, please visit  


For more information, please contact: Sara Guy, [email protected], 0208 183 0121 

Notes to Editor 

About UK for UNHCR  

UK for UNHCR is the UN Refugee Agency’s national charity partner for the UK. We build solidarity, create partnerships and raise funds across the UK to help deliver global humanitarian relief for refugees through UNHCR’s work.   

UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, leads international action to protect people forced to flee their homes because of conflict and persecution. It delivers life-saving assistance like shelter, food and water, helps safeguard fundamental human rights, and develops solutions that ensure people have a safe place to call home where they can build a better future. UNHCR also works to ensure that stateless people are granted a nationality.  

UK for UNHCR is a registered charity in England and Wales (registered charity number 1183415).   

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