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New Russian aid convoy heading to Ukraine’s troubled Donbass

April 02, 2015, 5:21 UTC+3 MOSCOW
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MOSCOW, April 2. /TASS/. A new humanitarian aid convoy is heading to Ukraine’s troubled Donbass, a source from the Russian Ministry for Emergency Situations’ National Crisis Management Centre has told TASS.

The 23rd humanitarian convoy of more than 120 vehicles carries to the Donetsk and Lugansk regions more than 1,400 tonnes of cargo, including foodstuffs, essentials, medicines, seeds for the spring sowing campaign as well as construction materials, the source said.

Approaching the Ukrainian border, the convoy will as usual split into two parts, one heading to the Donetsk border crossing point, from where it will travel to Lugansk. The second half of the convoy will cross the Matveyev Kurgan border crossing point, heading for Donetsk.

At wheel are experienced drivers, who have repeatedly delivered humanitarian cargoes to the war-torn Lugansk and Donetsk regions, the source said.

The convoy is self-sustainable, having medics as well as technical personnel, who can offer necessary assistance to drivers and officers accompanying the cargo.

The authorities of the Donetsk and Lugansk people’s republics say they reckon only on aid from Russia. Earlier, the United Nations announced that it had to stop distributing food aid among residents of the two self-proclaimed republics, citing low funding to finance humanitarian operations in the country.

A report of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs on Monday said funding continued to remain seriously low, with only 16% of the sum required for Ukraine in 2015 funded or pledged.

From August 2014, Russian humanitarian convoys have delivered to Donbass more than 28,500 tonnes of humanitarian aid.

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