MOSCOW, June 19 (Xinhua) -- Nearly 19,000 refugees have fled from Ukraine to Russia, according to official statistics released Thursday.
According to latest statistics given by the Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations, the number of reported refugees from Ukraine has exceeded 18,900.
"They are staying in Southern, Central, North-Western Federal Districts, the city of Sevastopol and Crimea," spokesman of the ministry said, "as many as 8,800 people, including more than 4,500 children, are staying at temporary centers."
The refugees might be allowed to stay in Russia for one year, " with a possible extension" as long as they get permanent residence permits, said Russian presidential administration chief Sergei Ivanov when he was visiting the refugee settlements in Russia's southern Rostov region Thursday.
Moreover, the spokesman of Russian Foreign Ministry, Alexander Lukashevich, urged the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) monitoring mission to Ukraine to take effective steps and create humanitarian corridors for refugees in the eastern regions of the country.
Russia has reiterated that a humanitarian catastrophe was haunting Ukraine amid the spiking conflicts between insurgents and government troops, while Kiev has accused Moscow of inciting unrest in its southeastern regions.