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Iran Press TV

Russia sends humanitarian convoy to Ukraine's Donbass

Iran Press TV

Sun Jul 12, 2015 6:52AM

Russia is preparing to send its 32nd aid convoy to Ukraine's east, where ongoing clashes between Kiev's troops and pro-Russia forces have created a humanitarian crisis.

Russia's Emergencies Ministry announced on Sunday that a convoy of vehicles left the Noginsky rescue center in Moscow Oblast, adding that more vehicles from other regions are due to join the convoy in the Rostov region before heading to Donbass, Ukraine's conflict-hit eastern region.

"Today (Sunday) at 5:00 a.m. Moscow time [0200 GMT] cargo vehicles, which will be part of another [convoy of] humanitarian aid for the civilians in the Donetsk and Lugansk regions, left the Noginsky rescue center of Russia's Emergencies Ministry for the Rostov region," the ministry's spokesman said.

Russia has dispatched over 39,000 metric tons of humanitarian aid cargoes to the people of Donetsk and Lugansk since August 2014.

Donbass residents are on the edge of a humanitarian calamity due to deadly fighting between pro-Russia forces and the Ukrainian army since Kiev launched military operations in eastern Ukraine in April 2014 to suppress pro-Moscow protests there.

The region has also been suffering from an economic blockade imposed by Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko last November. The restrictive measures have led to the withdrawal of all state-funded health, educational and social protection organizations from Donbass.

Jens Laerke, a spokesperson for the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, has , meanwhile, said that the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine has affected almost one in nine of the total population and displaced nearly 1.4 million citizens.

The World Food Program has also increased its emergency food assistance to three times higher than before to help the 500,000 people affected by the conflict in the country until the end of the year.

The conflict in Ukraine has so far claimed the lives of at least 6,500 people, according to the UN.

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