ROSTOV-ON-DON, September 13. /ITAR-TASS/. Moscow suggested to Ukrainian border guards and customs officers jointly controlling the second convoy with humanitarian aid for east Ukrainian residents, but they refused to, a Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) spokesman said Saturday.
“We repeatedly suggested that Ukrainian border guards and customs officers take part in inspections of a humanitarian convoy that was passing through border and customs control at the Donetsk border-crossing point, but the Ukrainian side rejected the offer,” Nikolai Sinitsyn, a spokesman for the FSB’s border department in the southern Russian Rostov Region, told Itar-Tass.
Ukraine's National Security and Defense Council said Saturday Ukrainian border officials were not allowed to inspect the second batch of Russia's humanitarian cargo.
Sinitsyn said Ukrainian customs officers and border guards were standing nearby watching the Russian side inspecting the trucks with aid.
“It’s necessary to note that no one hindered the work of the Ukrainian side. Representatives of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe were also working at the checkpoint,” he said.
Overall, six columns of trucks arrived in the eastern Ukrainian city of Lugansk earlier Saturday. The cargo contains cereals, sugar, medications and warm clothes.
On August 22, Russia delivered the first batch of its humanitarian assistance to eastern Ukrainian regions: some 2,000 metric tons of aid, including food (grain, sugar, baby food), medications, sleeping bags and portable power generators, to eastern Ukrainian regions.
Clashes between Kiev-sent troops and local militias in the southeast Ukrainian Donetsk and Lugansk regions during Kiev’s military operation to regain control over the breakaway territories, which call themselves the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s republics (DPR and LPR), have killed hundreds of civilians, brought destruction and forced hundreds of thousands to flee the area.
The parties to the Ukrainian conflict agreed on cessation of fire during OSCE-mediated talks in Minsk on September 5. The long hoped-for ceasefire took effect the same day, but the West keeps imposing sanctions on Russia and claiming Moscow is involved in hostilities in Ukraine, which Russia has repeatedly denied.