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Kiev denies receiving Moscow’s humanitarian convoy note

August 29, 2014, 15:59 UTC+3 KIEV/MOSCOW
Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said earlier Friday that Moscow sent another humanitarian convoy note to Kiev on Thursday and hoped the delivery could be started soon
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© ITAR-TASS/Dmitry Rogulin

KIEV/MOSCOW, August 29. /ITAR-TASS/. Ukraine’s authorities have not received the Russian side’s official request for sending another humanitarian convoy to the east of Ukraine, a spokesman for the Ukrainian National Security and Defense Council said on Friday.

Andrei Lysenko told reporters, “We have not received any official humanitarian convoy request.”

Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said earlier Friday that Moscow sent another humanitarian convoy note to Kiev on Thursday and hoped the delivery could be started soon.

“Our official note on Russia’s intention to send a new humanitarian convoy to the southeast of Ukraine had been delivered to the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry last Sunday, five days ago,” the minister said. “It confirmed that the same as in the case of the first humanitarian convoy we intend to co-ordinate all the procedures with the Ukrainian side, with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) participation,” Lavrov said. “We intend to agree on the necessary security guarantees, including security guarantees from the Russian side for the aid delivery to the border and the Ukrainian side’s guarantees for the territory controlled by Kiev authorities, militias’ guarantees for the cargo safe passage via their territory.”

“The day before yesterday we received an answer from the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry that expressed an agreement in principle to the sending of Russian humanitarian aid to the southeast of Ukraine and expressed the Ukrainian view on the logistics of this second convoy,” Lavrov said.

“We sent a second note to the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry yesterday with taking into account the Ukrainian proposals,” the minister said. “In our view, we have a common understanding on the way of ensuring security of this second convoy to the southeast [of Ukraine] and the cargo delivery.”

“The ICRC has been informed about all these aspects,” Lavrov said. “We hope that now that the second note, taking into account Ukraine’s suggestions has been sent to Kiev, it will be accepted shortly, and we will be able to proceed to the actual dispatch of humanitarian cargoes, so urgently needed by the civilian population of the southeast.”

The first Russian humanitarian aid convoy for the embattled east of Ukraine departed from Moscow on August 12 and in two days reached the Ukrainian border. After long consultations with the Ukrainian side, more than 200 Russian trucks with relief supplies entered the neighbouring country. Kiev accused Moscow of intrusion, saying that the convoy crossed the border without permission. The ICRC representatives refused to accompany the convoy, referring to unconfirmed security guarantees that had earlier been given by the warring sides.

On August 23, all the Russian convoy’s trucks returned to Russia after unloading in Luhansk about 2,000 tonnes of food products, water, baby food and medical supplies.

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