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MOSCOW, February 1. /TASS/. Russia’s Emergencies Ministry has assessed as successful another stage of providing humanitarian aid to war-torn Donbass.
"A regular stage of humanitarian aid supplies to the Donetsk and Lugansk regions went on like clock-work as all the cargoes were delivered and the task was accomplished," the ministry’s press service told TASS on Saturday.
The twelfth convoy of the Russian Emergencies Ministry comprised over 170 trucks that all returned empty to the Russian southern Rostov region.
The trucks were inspected by customs and border officers at the checkpoints of Donetsk (in the Rostov region) and Matveyev Kurgan.
Ukraine’s customs officers and border guards were overseeing the procedures earlier in the day when the convoy was heading for Donbass, a TASS correspondent said in an eyewitness’s report adding the reporters who were admitted to the border checkpoints could make sure the trucks had come back empty.
Observers of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine, who as a rule used to just witness the customs procedures at the border,escorted the humanitarian aid convoy across the Russian border into the Ukrainian territory for the first time.
"The Russian Emergencies Ministry’s convoy was escorted by OSCE mission’s monitors on two off-road cars," an official at the ministry told TASS specifying that the convoy had been escorted to the point of destination.
"The other convoy heading to Lugansk was met at the border crossing by an OSCE observer," he said.
The twelfth Russian convoy delivered 1,500 tonnes of humanitarian aid to Lugansk and Donetsk on Saturday, mainly foodstuffs, medicines, building materials and prime necessity items to people remaining in the conflict-stricken region.
In particular, 170 whitish trucks delivered to Donbass canned fish, cereals, flour, pasta and oil along with antibiotics, blood-derived products and insulin for diabetics
"These relief cargoes were raised in several Russian regions, including the Moscow, Voronezh and Rostov regions," the ministry said.
Along with this, the ministry reiterates that it will form more humanitarian convoys if Donbass files appropriate requests.
Since mid-August 2014, eleven Russian humanitarian aid convoys have delivered more than 14,800 tonnes of relief supplies to the areas of southeastern Ukraine swept by the humanitarian crisis.