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Russia obliged to provide humanitarian and political assistance to east Ukraine — experts

May 30, 2014, 16:36 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Polled experts agree, that Russia is obliged to extend vast humanitarian, legal, political and diplomatic assistance to Ukraine’s restive Donetsk and Luhansk Regions

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© ITAR-TASS/Denis Vyshinsky

MOSCOW, May 30. /ITAR-TASS/. Russia is obliged to extend vast humanitarian, legal, political and diplomatic assistance to Ukraine’s restive Donetsk and Luhansk Regions, polled experts say. Moscow has already declared its intention to provide humanitarian assistance to the surviving victims of violence in Ukraine’s Southeast.

Russia will certainly extend humanitarian assistance to the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic, Russian presidential press-secretary Dmitry Peskov said on Thursday.

“Humanitarian aid will certainly be provided, but I cannot say anything about military assistance. You should go and ask the military about that. Humanitarian assistance will certainly be provided,” Peskov said on the Russian News Service radio.

The Russian Foreign Ministry on Wednesday addressed the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry with a special note on the subject. It urged measures to ensure the prompt delivery of humanitarian supplies and medicines to the conflict zone in the southeast only to hear refusal and accusations of a propaganda attempt.

In the meantime, a campaign is underway in Moscow to collect humanitarian aide for the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.

“Nobody will be able to prohibit Russian citizens from helping the two republics in the Donbass coalfields,” says the director of the Donetsk-based Center for Political Analysis and Technologies, Sergey Baryshnikov. The situation is reminiscent of Spain in the 1930's, he remarks.

Baryshnikov believes that first and foremost Donbass needs political and diplomatic support, statements by top officials and parliamentary structures.

“We must issue clear signals that may provide a security umbrella protecting our nascent statehood,” he told the ITAR-TASS political analysis center.

The director of the Stolypin and Struve Centre for Liberal-Conservative Politics, Aleksandr Kazakov, believes that Russia should create a coalition against genocide in Ukraine.

“It is essential to unite countries that do not like what is happening. This coalition should start working within all international agencies and pose problems to our opponents,” Kazakov said.

The head of the Historical Memory foundation, Aleksandr Dyukov, believes it is necessary to promote the activity of human rights organizations in Ukraine’s Southeast.

“At least it is necessary to establish a monitoring network to keep an eye on the situation at a time when the Ukrainian press has turned into propaganda machinery,” he said.

Dyukov said it will be crucial to provide legal support for all those who have suffered from the “death squads” and arbitrary actions by the SBU security service.

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