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Russia Sending Humanitarian Convoy to East Ukraine

A Russian humanitarian aid convoy left the Moscow area last night on its way to Ukraine to deliver food, medicine and other supplies to the besieged areas of eastern Ukraine. The mission is led by the International Committee of the Red Cross and has been approved by Ukraine.

An emergency meeting of the UN was called last week to discuss the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine. According to RIA Novosti,

Earlier this week, Churkin described the situation in eastern Ukraine as catastrophic at an emergency UN Security Council meeting. Over four million people are trapped in the combat zone in eastern Ukraine, and more than 200,000 of them have no access to water, according to Russia’s UN envoy.

Nearly 1,400 people have been killed and over 4,000 wounded in eastern Ukraine since Kiev began attacking the breakaway region. At least 117,000 and as many as 730,000 Ukrainians have become refugees in Russia.

The organization of an aid convoy with the approval of Ukraine is somewhat of a surprise considering reports indicated last week that Cameron and Obama consider a Russian aid mission “unjustified and illegal.” NATO’s Anders Rasmussen has warned that Russia may use a humanitarian mission as a pretext for invasion.

We’ll see what happens next. I suspect a lot of civilians will be relieved.

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