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Stand Up for Ukraine event raises more than ten billion euros

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By Euronews  with AFP, AP
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"Stand Up for Ukraine" global campaign for pledging funds for Ukraine and its refugees, at the Palace on the Water, in Warsaw, Poland, on Saturday, April 9, 2022.
"Stand Up for Ukraine" global campaign for pledging funds for Ukraine and its refugees, at the Palace on the Water, in Warsaw, Poland, on Saturday, April 9, 2022.   -   Copyright  AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski

An international fundraising drive has generated €10.1 billion in pledges to support Ukraine, and especially refugees, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced on Saturday in Warsaw.

The event, called 'Stand Up For Ukraine' raised €9.1 billion while the Commission and European Bank for Reconstruction and Development EBRD is adding another billion euros for a total of €10.1 billion.

Convened jointly by von der Leyen and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, the event was intended to prompt political leaders and global celebrities to provide funding and other donations for the people of Ukraine.

Polish President Andrzej Duda joined the event while Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Trudeau joined remotely.

"I was yesterday in Kyiv and I visited Bucha. And there are no words for the horror I've seen in Bucha, the ugly face of Putin's army terrorizing people. And I have so much admiration for our brave Ukrainian friends fighting against this. They are fighting our war," von der Leyen said in an address.

Saturday’s pledging event was held in Warsaw because more than 2.5 million of the 4.4 million people who have fled Ukraine since Russia’s invasion began entered Poland. Many have stayed though some have moved on to other countries.

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Celebrities participating in a Global Citizen-organized social media rally to show support for Ukraine.AP/AP

A group of international celebrities showed their support for the European Union's fundraising event for Ukraine on Saturday in a promotional video.

Numerous actors and singers like Priyanka Chopra Jonas, Bastile, and talk show host Oprah Winfrey made an appearance in the video, which was broadcast to the audience after addresses by world leaders.

A Global Citizen-organized social media rally on Friday urged governments, institutions, corporations and individuals to help fund humanitarian efforts in Ukraine and other regions of the world. Celebrities are being asked to use their social media accounts to publicize the effort, using the hashtag #StandUpForUkraine.

Springsteen posted a video on social media Friday to show his support: “Refugees in Ukraine and around the world need our help now,” he said. “Everyone deserves safe and humane living conditions.” Barbra Streisand tweeted a link to Global Citizen and wrote: “I supported and hope you will too.”