THE UNITED NATIONS, September 09. /ITAR-TASS/. Russian and Ukrainian diplomats on Monday exchanged angry remarks at a meeting of the UN Security Council devoted to the plight of children in armed conflicts. Their argument ended with an appeal on the Russian side “to give up fruitless politicking” and “to focus on achieving peace and overcoming the harshest humanitarian crisis”.
Deputy Russian Ambassador to the UN, Yevgeny Zagainov, called attention of participants in the debates to the perilous aftermath of the Ukrainian Armed Forces’ punitive operation in the south-east of Ukraine.
He recalled UN’s most recent data saying that no less than 23 children had died and 38 more had been injured in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions since mid-April.
“Causing particular concern is the plight of hundreds of children who need urgent medical aid,” Zagainov said. “These are the children with dependence on insulin, children with oncology and other heavy illnesses, as well as disabled children. More than that, thousands of children in the zone of conflict have been orphaned.”
He also stressed an acute shortage of physicians, paramedics and nurses in the region and said the risks of an outbreak of infectious diseases were high.
Zagainov said it was highly regrettable that Kiev had not given any response to an appeal of human rights activists who had made known the readiness of the Russian side to start admitting to hospitals the Donetsk and Luhansk children needing specialized medical care.
Ukraine’s Deputy Ambassador, Oleksadnr Pavlichenko, responded by alleging that defending civilians and children, in the first place, remained the highest priority of the government throughout the antiterrorist operation in the south-east while the "terrorist groups financed from Russia" were ostensibly guilty of “abducting children” and “taking them illegally out of the country”.
Pavlichenko alleged that several groups of children “have been returned successfully and are now kept in secure places.”
Yevgeny Zagainov said to this he was not a bit surprised by his Ukrainian counterpart’s desire to utilize any opportunity that might avail itself at the UN for circulating libelous charges against Russia. They were a smokescreen covering up an attempt to conceal the crimes committed by Ukrainian military and radicals against the residents of south-east Ukraine.
“In reality, it is the Ukrainian side that bears the full brunt of responsibility for the sufferings of children in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions and the striving to show off the aid to children and efforts the ensure their security as criminal offenses of some sort look particularly cynical in this context,” Zagainov said.
He said it was regrettable that the Ukrainian side did not realize the evil and unrewarding nature of attempts to make a ploy of the suffering of Ukrainian citizens, including little children.
“We’d like to call on the Ukrainian representative to give up fruitless politicking and to concentrate attention on the earliest possible achievement of peace and elimination of the harshest humanitarian crisis, which had swept the south-east regions," Zagainov said.
Other rapporteurs who took the floor at the session did not mention Ukraine and concentrated on the situation in Africa and the Middle East.