© AP Photo/Sergei Grits
The first trucks of the convoy roll on the main road to Luhansk near the village of Uralo-Kavkaz, after it passed the border post at Izvaryne, eastern Ukraine, Friday, Aug. 22, 2014.
Russia's Red Cross is ready to take part in the aid mission in eastern Ukraine, where the humanitarian situation is "critical", and to escort the Russian aid convoy that is on its way to Lugansk without ICRC accompanying it due to security concerns.
The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) are holding talks in Geneva over the situation regarding the humanitarian aid to Ukraine, the head of the Russian Red Cross, Raisa Lukutsova, told RIA Novosti on Friday.
She described the situation in the conflict-torn east Ukrainian regions as catastrophic
Russian Red Cross volunteers are ready to participate urgently in the humanitarian operation in the area.
"The Ukrainian side kept fobbing us off with promises that the [Russian aid] convoy could proceed 'tomorrow', 'the day after tomorrow,' but they failed to provide security guarantees to ICRC employees
," Lukutsova told the Interfax agency.
"But what's most important is that there are no food products, medications, and water in the conflict zone
. And we, as Russia's Red Cross, are ready to take part in this humanitarian operation."