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Group sends meals to 40 million Ukrainians, urges U.S. to continue support

World Central Kitchen has delivered meals to Ukrainians both stuck inside the country and those who fled as refugees across international borders.

WASHINGTON — Soon after Russia invaded Ukraine, World Central Kitchen began sending hot food and meal kits across the country to families in need. 

As of Friday, June 10, the organization has delivered around 40 million meals to Ukrainians both stuck inside the country and those who fled as refugees across international borders.

World Central Kitchen founder Chef José Andrés told the House Oversight Subcommittee on National Security in a virtual hearing on Friday that his organization is currently set up in 1,400 shelters throughout Ukraine and at seven checkpoints along the border with Poland.

He said it's not easy.

"Millions are displaced. Infrastructure is damaged, bridges and roads are damaged, electricity outages," he said.

Andres urged international governments and agencies to cut through bureaucratic red tape, to make it easier for humanitarian organizations like his to more quickly deliver needed assistance.

Meanwhile, U.S. lawmakers laid blame for the crisis precisely where it belongs.

"Now in its fourth month, Russian President Vladimir Putin's unprovoked and unjust invasion of Ukraine has taken a devastating toll," said Rep. Stephen Lynch (D-Massachusetts). "This unjust war of aggression has resulted in the tragic loss of thousands of innocent lives and precipitated a grave humanitarian crisis."

In May, Congress passed a $39.8 billion security and humanitarian aid bill to support Ukraine.

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