Alain Aeschlimann, the head of the ICRC delegation to Ukraine, has dismissed reports about the organization suspending its operation in the LPR during the meeting with LPR acting foreign minister Vladislav Deinego.
Some Ukrainian media posted reports alleging that the ICRC had suspended distribution of humanitarian aid in the LPR due to some 'illegal armed groups' interfering with its work.
"I arrived in Lugansk to discuss our motion to strengthen our partnership. We discussed our programs, delivering food, water supply maintenance, healthcare, the detainees issue," Aeschlimann said.
"I would like to point out that our work has not been interrupted, despite some mass media reports alleging thecontrary; we were surprised to hear these reports, they are not true. We are committed to our work and we agree to continue on with it," he maintained.
Aeschlimann added that during the meeting with Deinego they had also discussed the reconstruction of Stanitsa Luganskaya bridge in view of approaching winter.
Currently there is only one official checkpoint at the line of contact in LPR area of responsibility in Donbass and it is accessible via the bridge in vicinity of Stanitsa Luganskaya. Only pedestrian traffic here is possible thanks to temporary conduit, as the bridge was blown up by Ukrainian forces in early 2015. LPR has been continuously proposing to rebuild it.
The Package of Measures for the Implementation of the Minsk Agreements was adopted by the Contact Group on Ukraine on 12 February 2015 and supported by member states of the Normandy Four (Germany, Russia, Ukraine and France). The UN Security Council approved the document by its 2202 Resolution and called upon all the sides to ensure full implementation of the Package of Measures.
The document provides for comprehensive ceasefire, withdrawal of all heavy weapons from the contact line, starting a dialog on reconstruction of social and economic ties between Kiev and Donbass. It also envisages carrying out constitutional reform in Ukraine providing for decentralization and adopting permanent legislation on a special status of certain areas of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions.
To facilitate the work of the Contact Group, four working groups were set up under its aegis to deal with issues of security, politics, return of internally displaced people and refuges, as well as with social, humanitarian, economic and rehabilitation issues.