Pro-Russian rebels banned all humanitarian organizations on the territory of so-called Lugansk People’s Republic. Only International Committee of Red Cross was allowed to operate in the part of Lugansk Region which is not under Ukraine authorities control right now. All operations of UN on the territory of so-called Donetsk People’s Republic were also stopped.
On September 24 Stephen O’Brien, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator of United Nations, expressed his concern because “the authorities on the East of Ukraine” ordered to stop all operations of UN in Lugansk. The staff of UN institution was told to leave the territory by September 25. Also several international NGOs were informed that they must leave “republic” before September 26.
I am concerned by messages that de facto authorities on the East of Ukraine ordered to institutions of UN in Lugansk to stop all operations and leave the area by tomorrow, September 25.
– Stephen O’Brien
Under-Secretary-General of UN said that he’s also concerned regarding situation with accreditation and registration of international NGOs in Donetsk
Decision of de facto authorities in Donetsk regarding further operations hasn’t been made yet and operations of all UN institutions of UN stopped.
– Stephen O’Brien
O’Brien said that this situation is a threat for lives of people and old people, women and kids will be left without most essential things.
Coordinator of humanitarian aid reminded that humanitarian situation in the region is hard. He said that hospitals don’t have enough of medicine, including insulin and vaccine against tuberculosis. Doctors can’t do surgeries because there is no anesthesia. 150 thousands of people don’t get food sets every month, 1.3 million of people have problems with water. Over 30 thousands can’t get construction materials that they need in order to fix their houses.
At the same time about 16 tons of humanitarian aid including food can’t be delivered to people who need that. Stephen O’Brien said that actions of “de facto authorities in Donetsk and Lugansk” brutally violate international humanitarian laws. He demanded to renew the work of UN and other international NGOs immediately. He also addressed to those who can influence “de facto authorities” and convince them not to create obstacles in delivering humanitarian aid to those who need it. Reported at www.un.org
Today humanitarian mission of “Doctors without borders” that was also kicked out of Lugansk made a statement regarding the situation. You can read it here – Ukraine: MSF refused permission to work in Lugansk, leaving vulnerable people deprived of essential healthcare and medicines
We find the decision unacceptable given the significant medical and humanitarian needs of people affected by the ongoing conflict in Lugansk. MSF has been one of the few international organisations providing vital assistance in Lugansk for more than a year. We have been dedicated to supporting doctors and nurses to be able to carry on their crucial work. As in all conflict zones where MSF works, our only aim has been to help vulnerable people, no matter their political beliefs or which side of the frontline they find themselves on.
– Dr Bart Janssens, MSF Director of Operations.
This situation follows several attempts to block the work of MSF in Lugansk and Donetsk. On September 23 residents of Donetsk came “to protest” against this humanitarian organizations. Read more at “Protests” against humanitarian mission of “Doctors Without Borders” in Donetsk and few days before that on September 15 “de facto authorities” of Lugansk confiscated medicine from warehouses of MSF, read more at Authorities of occupied Lugansk confiscated medicine from storehouses of Doctors Without Borders
So far the only humanitarian organization that was allowed to work in Lugansk is International Committee of Red Cross. But even they have problems. Yesterday at about 15:00 8 cargo trucks with humanitarian aid from ICRC went through the checkpoint “Bugas” to the territory of Donetsk Region which is currently under control of illegal armed groups.
But after 3 hours those truck with food and other supply came back, because illegal armed groups didn’t let them go through. This was reported by State Border Guard Service of Ukraine today at http://dpsu.gov.ua
Anyway, today ICRC managed to deliver insulin to the territory controlled by so-called Donetsk People’s Republic, to Snezhnoye, Yasinovata, Torez, Khartsyzsk, Kirovskoye and Amvrosiyevka.