ROSTOV-ON-DON, August 17 /ITAR-TASS/. A group of 228 Ukrainian refugees, including disabled persons, has crossed into Russia, spokesman for Russia’s southern customs branch Rayan Farukshin said on Sunday.
The group passed through the Novoshakhtinsk checkpoint in the Rostov Region in south Russia on Saturday night after walking on foot from the Dolzhansky post on the Ukrainian territory, the spokesman said.
“There were 82 wheelchair persons among those who crossed the border,” the spokesman said.
The Ukrainian refugees came from towns in the east Ukrainian Luhansk region. They travelled by buses to get to the Russian-Ukrainian border, the spokesman said.
The group is one of the most numerous Ukrainian refugee contingents that have crossed into Russia through the Novoshakhtinsk checkpoints over the week, the spokesman said.
“All the structures responsible for refugee accommodation were mobilized to provide prompt assistance to such a large number of people,” Farukshin said.
All the newcomers were given an opportunity to take rest and drink water and tea while work was underway to resolve all organizational issues, the spokesman said.
“Russian customs officers and border guards have organized, jointly with the Rostov Region government, the Novoshakhtinsk administration and the personnel of the Interior and Emergencies Ministries, the transportation of Ukrainian citizens to a temporary accommodation center in the town of Donetsk in the Rostov Region,” the spokesman said.
The Ukrainian refugees passed through full customs and border control, the spokesman said.
Around a million refugees from eastern Ukraine are currently staying in Russia, deputy head of the Coordinator Staff for Russia’s Public Chamber Georgy Fyodorov said on Thursday.
“The situation is disastrous as around a million of Ukrainian people are already staying in Russia”, he said, stressing that the situation is actually much worse than the United Nations officials say.