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Ukraine vs Nagorno-Karabakh: Breakdown of Foreign Humanitarian Aid

While it would be intellectually dishonest to empirically compare the two humanitarian crises in Ukraine and Nagorno-Karabakh, the parity in humanitarian aid administered is a growing conversation after the head of the USAID Samantha Power announced on Tuesday $11.5M USD in humanitarian aid to refugees of Nagorno-Karabakh. 

Additionally, the Government of Sweden committed the equivalent of $1.36M USD in humanitarian aid that will be distributed to the International Committee of the Red Cross in the region, who have been meeting and administering supplies to Artsakh refugees passing through the Lachin Corridor and stopping in the Armenian cities of Kornidzor and Goris. 

We became curious to see what humanitarian aid other countries have administered to Nagorno-Karabakh, and how those figures compare to Ukraine, which remains a headline topic with Western media outlets and Western politicians.

When we started our research, we decided to focus solely on humanitarian aid, as military and financial aid have more nuances that make it foggy to quantify in a dollar amount, such as administering of weapons, and under the understanding Armenia has not received military aid from European countries. 

We also decided to focus on “Western” countries for this exercise, European and North American countries who have been the most stringent on issues relating to Ukraine and Russia. 

From there, France, an ally of Armenia, was left off this graphic, as the humanitarian assistance provided cannot be quantified into an exact number, after 40 tons of humanitarian aid were sent on trucks to Nagorno-Karabakh before being blocked by Azerbaijan at the illegal Lachin Corridor entrance. Additionally, France has not yet committed to giving humanitarian aid funds to the situation. However, it is unclear if the initial aid from the trucks has been delivered to civilians of Nagorno-Karabakh during the exodus of Artsakh refugees. 

Additionally, it is important to note what information has been made public online. As indicated on the graphic, most government entities provide figures to their aid, while the way of which they communicate this specifics of how the aid is being spent varies in transparency. Furthermore, it is unclear how much of the funds have been transferred, and what the cash flow for these deals looks like. 

We did our best to cross-reference these two issues with non-governmental entities based on information available online to determine what is accurate. Often, there were discrepancies. 

For example, the European Commission states in their press release from September 21, 2023 announcing their initial €500,000 funding to the people of Nagorno-Karabakh that they administered  €1.7M in aid “earlier this year”, however we could not find any press releases or news outlets from this vague time period announcing this aid, which does not fall in line with pass habits and behaviors of the EU. Therefore, we did not include that figure in the humanitarian aid to Nagorno-Karabakh. 

The numbers are accurate as of September 27 at 7:00AM PST. Even since beginning our research, German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock announced early Wednesday that Germany will be increasing their humanitarian assistance from €2m to €5M.

The graphic is in no way an accurate representation of the horrendous experiences of the individuals and families in Ukraine and Nagorno-Karabakh, but more an accurate representation of where foreign entities make available to serve out their beliefs, whether it be democracy, human rights, and/or economic value.

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