The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) acknowledged receipt of the offer from Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergei Lavrov about organizing aid convoys to the affected areas in eastern Ukraine, but stressed that this assistance can be provided only in strict adherence to its fundamental working principles of neutrality, impartiality, and independence.
The ICRC said this in a statement, available on its official website.
“Our priority is to assist the displaced and resident people in Donbass, and to provide medical services to the wounded in all affected areas. The current situation calls for a bigger effort to help the civilian population, and we are deploying additional teams in Marioupol and Starobilsk,” said Michel Masson, head of the ICRC operations in Ukraine.
Masson noted that in the current situation, any humanitarian initiative is welcome to alleviate the suffering of civilians.
“We are exploring the possibility of distributing additional aid in the conflict zones; this implies the involvement, endorsement, and support of all concerned parties. Any ICRC action will be taken in strict adherence to our fundamental working principles of neutrality, impartiality, and independence. Furthermore, the ICRC teams also need safe access to perform their work,” Masson emphasized.