The main reason for the delay of the Russian humanitarian cargo for residents of eastern Ukraine is a lack of safety guarantees from Ukraine, Russian Red Cross Chairperson Raisa Lukutstova said.
"The Ukrainian authorities do not comply with one demand of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) - to ensure safety of all participants of the humanitarian rally. This is the main reason why vital cargo is delayed," Lukutstova told reporters in Moscow.
Lukutstova said she intended to meet in Moscow with head of the ICRC European bureau Laurent Korba.
"We will meet today at about 1 p.m. Moscow time with Korba, who arrived to Russia specifically to discuss issues of delivering humanitarian cargo to eastern Ukraine," she said.
The main issue of the meeting will be "cooperation of the Russian and Ukrainian societies of the Red Cross over the situation in southeastern Ukraine and advancing the humanitarian convoy," Lukutstova said.
"Besides, we expect around 60 ICRC employees, who have experience in participating in such operations, to arrive to the Rostov region tomorrow or the day after tomorrow. About 30 such employees are already there. Experts of the Russian Red Cross were initially expected to participate, however most have experience natural disasters, so it has been decided to involve people with more experience in such operations," she said.
Representatives of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic (DNR) and Lugansk People's Republic (LNR) "guarantee complete safety of ICRC employees and our employees," Lukutstova said at a meeting of the public committee to support residents of southeastern Ukraine in the Federation Council.
All vehicles of the humanitarian convoy have Red Cross emblems, Lukutstova said. "Our emblem is the most recognizable in the world after Coca-Cola. And when vehicles with our emblem appear, it is clear at once that this is humanitarian aid," she said.
Over 103 million rubles were collected to help refugees and over 20 million of them were spent, Lukutstova said.
"We are providing help. The humanitarian convoy is currently under the supervision of the ICRC, which will accompany it, and humanitarian aid distribution will be carried out with the participation of representatives of the LNR, DNR and Rostov region," she said.
It is regrettable that the humanitarian convoy can not start moving for so long, Lukutstova said. "Imagine the situation, this cargo is at the heat of +30 degrees, and at that, every product has expiration date," she said.
The DNR can not agree with Ukraine on safe delivery of the humanitarian cargo, DNR representative in Russia Andrei Rodkin said at the committee meeting.
"All hope is only on the International Red Cross. All our attempts to agree on a safe corridor and ceasefire so that the humanitarian cargo is delivered and given to people have failed. We can not agree with them [the Kyiv authorities] in any way," Rodkin said.
Ukraine is not responsible for the safety of the Russian convoy passing through the territory controlled by armed formations operating in eastern Ukraine, Ukrainian presidential administration deputy head Valery Chaly said earlier.
All rights reserved by Rossiyskaya Gazeta.