This report examines a largely overlooked but not unimportant aspect of the humanitarian crisis in eastern Ukraine: the extent to which a lack of timely and reliable information is exacerbating the misery of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), rendering them vulnerable through confusion and mistrust, and contributing to rising tensions between the host population and the displaced.
In the immediate aftermath of a disaster, keeping communities informed about what's happening around them, how to reconnect with their families and friends or what aid services may be available for them, goes beyond saving lives. It is about restoring people's dignity and respect, it is about fulfilling people's rights and the right to know, ask questions and participate in their own relief and recovery and, very importantly, holding stakeholders to account.
Ukraine: Trapped in a Propaganda War. Abandoned. Frustrated. Stigmatized. is based on a rapid consultation conducted by Internews' assessment team in January 2015. The report seeks to present an understanding of the information needs and access to communications channels among displaced populations and host communities in eastern Ukraine amidst the escalating hostilities and the influx of competing information sources from both the Ukrainian and Russian sides of the conflict.