“Overall, the hospitals have received 300 Ukrainian citizens, including 30 Ukrainians wounded as a result of the military operation,” Rostov Region acting governor Sergei Bondarev said at a Russian government commission for emergency situations.
Over 100 Ukrainian refugees are staying at the region’s hospitals because their health condition requires hospitalization, the acting Rostov Region governor said.Fierce clashes have been underway between the Ukrainian military and militias in the eastern Ukrainian Donetsk and Luhansk regions, which refused to recognize the authorities who had been propelled to power amid riots during a coup in Ukraine in February 2014. The regions' residents demanded the country's federalization.
Kiev is conducting a punitive operation against federalization supporters in Ukraine's East that involves armored vehicles, heavy artillery and attack aviation. It has already claimed hundreds of lives, including civilian, and left some buildings destroyed and damaged.
The Donetsk and Luhansk regions, which border on Russia, held referendums on May 11, in which most voters supported independence from Ukraine. Their independence has not been officially recognized.
A Russian law enforcement source said on Wednesday that more than 13,500 registered refugees from Ukraine’s embattled southeastern regions are currently in Russia, including some 6,200 children.
The refugees are in the border regions of Russia’s Central and Southern federal districts, as well as in Crimea and the federal city of Sevastopol — two entities that reunified with Russia in mid-March 2014 after some 60 years as part of Ukraine.
The overall number of refugees from Ukraine in Russia stands at tens of thousands of people, but only some of them officially apply for the refugee status.