Humanitarian missions call on Ukrainian government not to close the checkpoints
International humanitarian missions operating in Ukraine express their serious concern about closing Zaitseve checkpoint and possible closure of other checkpoints. This is stated in the official report of the United Nations.
"Closing checkpoints directly affects the lives of people, exacerbates their needs and humanitarian requirements. In case the conflict intensifies, civilians can find themselves in dangerous areas, left alone with violence and the risk of mines and ammunition explosions. We urge the Government not to close the checkpoints", ‒ Neal Walker, Humanitarian Coordinator in Ukraine, says.
International humanitarian law stipulates that in the case of closing a certain transport corridor, it is necessary to explore all possible alternatives and open new safe corridors to ensure free movement of civilians, particularly in the areas of active hostilities.
"We call on all parties to cease fire, respect international humanitarian law and protect civilians from the dangers arising from military operations. Freedom of civilians' movement is extremely important, as well as the access of all humanitarian workers to people that need assistance", ‒ Barbara Manzi, the Head of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in Ukraine, stated.
"We support the initiative of international humanitarian missions and call on all parties to the conflict to ensure free and safe contact line crossing for civilians. Yesterday Zaitseve checkpoint was crossed by 6,450 people and 1,270 vehicles. It will be much more difficult for these people (and not only for them) to cross the contact line on the way back, ‒ Oleksandr Vyshniakov, Director of Rinat Akhmetov Humanitarian Center, shares. ‒ Moreover, due to the closure of Zaitseve checkpoint hundreds of children living in non-government-controlled areas of Donbas will not be able to receive their medications, handed over by the Humanitarian Center, on time".