On August, 22 Russia began smuggling humanitarian aid to Ukraine, ignoring established international rules, procedures and agreements, without the consent and escort of the International Committee of the Red Cross.
Although the border and customs services of Ukraine have already started clearance of the Russian convoy, in the morning Ukrainian officials were blocked by the Russian forces and detached from the inspection of the rest of the trucks in the column, despite previous agreements and the fact that they had been invited to the territory of Russia. We are concerned about the safety of our employees. Moreover, deep concern is raised because so far neither Ukrainian side nor the ICRC are aware of the content of the cargo.
The fact that Russian trucks entered the territory of Ukraine without proper border and customs procedures and that the cargo was not donated to the representatives of the International Committee of the Red Cross indicates deliberate and aggressive nature of Russia’s actions.
As we have previously emphasized the Russian side is fully responsible for the safety of the cargo. It is important to note that Ukraine has already taken all necessary measures to ensure the security of the cargo.
In order to prevent any provocations we have issued all necessary instructions for the safe passing of the convoy. Despite all attempts by the Ukrainian side the contact between the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and the one of Russia, has not been established, which is critical to ensure security along the route. We point out that terrorists carry out mortar attacks along the possible route of the cargo.
We also are not aware of the content of the agreements of the Russian side with Luhansk insurgents and we do not exclude the possibility of any planned provocation.
We consider this act to be another flagrant violation of the fundamental principles of international law, including inviolability of borders, non-interference in the internal affairs of another state and bona fide fulfillment of international obligations by the Russian Federation.
We call on all international partners to join the strong condemnation of illegal and aggressive acts of the Russian Federation.