EU deplores Russia’s humanitarian convoy into Ukraine
Brussels, Aug 23 (IANS) The European Union (EU) Friday deplored as illegal Russia’s decision to send humanitarian consignment into Ukrainian territory without escort of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) or consent of the Ukrainian government.
The EU criticised Russian convoy into Ukraine as a clear violation of Ukrainian border, saying such action goes counter to the previous arrangements reached between Ukraine, Russia and ICRC, Xinhua reported.
The EU urged Russia to reverse its decision and commended Ukrainian authorities for their restraint as well as readiness for further talks, the European External Action Service (EEAS), the EU’s foreign policy arm said in a statement.
Earlier, Ukraine’s media reported that part of Russia’s humanitarian convoy consisting of 280 trucks carrying some 2,000 tonnes of relief supplies, including food, medication, sleeping bags and power generators crossed the frontier at Ukraine’s border crossing of Izvarino, which is controlled by the independence-seeking insurgents.
In Moscow, the Russian foreign ministry said in a statement Friday that Russia was ready for the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) employee’s participation in accompanying the convoy.
But the ICRC said in its post on Twitter later that its representatives were not escorting the convoy due to the volatile security situation in the area.
In order to explore ways to end the crisis in Ukraine, the presidents of Belarus, Kazakhstan, Russia, Ukraine, and EU foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton will gather in Minsk next Tuesday.