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Ukraine: Unauthorized Convoy Crosses Border From Russia

  • VOA News

A Russian convoy transporting what Moscow said is humanitarian goods for pro-Russian separatists enters the eastern rebel-held city of Donetsk, Nov. 30, 2014.

A Russian convoy transporting what Moscow said is humanitarian goods for pro-Russian separatists enters the eastern rebel-held city of Donetsk, Nov. 30, 2014.

Ukraine accused Moscow on Sunday of again using alleged aid shipments to send weapons and ammunition to the separatist rebels as a Russian convoy entered its eastern region without permission.

Russian media reported that the convoy was delivering food and building materials to residents of rebel-held Donetsk.

Armed guards watched as the trucks, sent from the Rostov region of Russia, were unloaded in a rebel-held warehouse in the Makiivka suburb of Donetsk.

Ukrainian military spokesman Andriy Lysenko said in a televised briefing, "The lion's share of humanitarian supplies find their way to the rebels partly in the form of food, but mostly it is ammunition, equipment and other things for combat operations."

Insufficient food, medical supplies

Months of fighting in Ukraine's separatist regions have left many without sufficient food and medical supplies. Russia has regularly dispatched shipments of aid to the region, a move denounced by pro-Western Kyiv.

Elsewhere in Donetsk, fighting intensified at the local airport, a Reuters witness said. There has been continued shelling from both government forces and the rebels, even after a peace deal was signed on Sept. 5.

Lysenko told Reuters that three Ukrainian servicemen and an 82-year-old civilian had been killed in the past 24 hours.

He also said Ukrainian positions in Mariupol, a strategic city on the Sea of Azov, were once again coming under attack from rebel shelling.

A United Nations report earlier this month said more than 4,300 people have been killed and more than 9,900 wounded in the conflict-affected areas from mid-April to November 18.

U.N. monitors also reported the number of internally displaced people had sharply increased to nearly 467,000, including 19,000 from Crimea. The monitors noted almost a half-million other people have crossed into Russia.

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