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Russian human rights activists urge evacuation of civilians from Donetsk

May 27, 2014, 20:15 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Yelizaveta Glinka, head of the Fair Aid foundation, says two safety corridors should be created - one for the evacuation of civilians from the areas of hostilities and the other for delivering medical supplies to the city
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© ITAR-TASS/EPA/PHOTOMIG

MOSCOW, May 27. /ITAR-TASS/. Former Russian human rights ombudsman Vladimir Lukin has urged the creation of humanitarian safety corridors to evacuate children, women and elderly people from Ukraine’s eastern Donetsk region.

“Considering the difficult situation in Donetsk and large-scale military activities (taking place there), I am calling on everyone on whom it depends to provide humanitarian corridors to evacuate children, women and the elderly,” he told ITAR-TASS on Tuesday.

Mikhail Fedotov, Chairman of the Russian Presidential Council for Civil Society and Human Rights, recalled that the council had already appealed to the Ukrainian authorities and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) for assistance in organizing humanitarian safety corridors in the Donetsk Region, but it received no reply.

“Individuals and private institutions help us bring this initiative to work,” Fedotov told ITAR-TASS. “Neither the Ukrainian authorities, nor the OSCE have replied to us.”

Member of the Federal Civil Committee Civic Platform, head of the foundation Fair Aid, Yelizaveta Glinka, said two safety corridors should be created - one for the evacuation of civilians from the areas of hostilities and the other for delivering medical supplies to the city.

“I am ready to hold negotiations with anyone to organize a humanitarian corridor not only for the evacuation of children, women and the elderly, but also for the delivery of permanent humanitarian medical aid,” Glinka told ITAR-TASS before leaving for Donetsk.

Earlier reports said fighter planes had again appeared over the city. Ukraine’s law-enforcers blocked all exits from Donetsk and did not even let passenger buses leave the area of military operation.

Meanwhile, the city scrambled to evacuate schools and all the housing and public utilities departments were ordered to prepare bomb shelters in case of active fighting and bombings.

Denis Pushilin, the chairman of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) Supreme Council presidium, told ITAR-TASS that more than 50 militiamen and 20-50 civilians have died since Ukrainian law enforcers launched the active phase of their military operation in Donetsk on Monday, May 26.

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