Today, on April 13, in the Council of Federation of the Russian Federation Federal Assembly a session of the Committee for Public Support of the South-eastern Ukraine was held, during which Donbass situation was discussed, in particular the tense ecological situation in region, provision of humanitarian assistance to residents, development of interregional cooperation with public organizations of the Donetsk and Lugansk People's Republics.
Natalia Nikonorova, Acting Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Donetsk People's Republic, Acting Deputy Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Donetsk People's Republic Alexander Drobot, Chairman of Theatre Actors Union of the Donetsk People’s Republic Natalia Volkova, Director of Lugansk Philharmonic Vera Getsiy, representatives of public organizations were invited to the session.
In her speech, Natalia Nikonorova emphasized the timeliness of Humanitarian program for the reunification of Donbass people, providing with the results of a sociological survey in March 2017 among the residents of Donetsk region, temporarily under the Kiev’s control: “Among 1000 respondents, who reside in Donetsk region under the Ukraine’s control, the quality of health services (29.1%) and social assistance to the population (26.2%) in Ukraine were worst of all evaluated. Concerning humanitarian aid, 84.8% of respondents did not receive it. At the same time, more than a half of the respondents need food assistance - 60.1%, healthcare services - 45.9%, other targeted assistance - 17.3%. Among the medical services, cardiology (43.1%) and oncology (35.9%) are the most essential. All these sociological research data once again confirm the fact that Humanitarian program for the reunification of people Donbass is very relevant, because of program's directions, which are aimed at solving a number of social, medical, educational, cultural problems for the majority of the Donetsk region population.” In addition, the Head of the Foreign Ministry reported on the intermediate program results - more than 3300 calls were received to the “hotlines”.
“We can state that all areas of Humanitarian program for the reunification of Donbass people are being actively implemented. Within the framework of providing financial support to certain categories of citizens, one-time cash payments in conjunction with the Victory Day for veterans residing in the territory of Donetsk and Lugansk regions are carried out. As at April 12, already 12 veterans have received financial assistance in the amount of 10,000 rubles.
Within the framework of Humanitarian program in the field of medical services, four medical commissions to consider applications for treatment have been set up and work. On April 12, 2017, the first baby was born, mother decided to take part in Humanitarian program, because of complications during pregnancy. Childbirth was successful, mother and baby doing well.
Four Centers of Social Assistance and Administrative Services, located near the official entry and exit checkpoints, have already been opened and successfully operate. In these centers, residents of territories under Ukraine's control can receive one-time payments in conjunction with the Victory Day, send correspondence to the territory of the Donetsk People's Republic, buy a mobile communication package “Phoenix”, etc. In order to save professional ties between the enterprises located in the territory of the Donetsk People's Republic and beyond the contact line, preparations for joint meetings, conferences and other events are already under way. In addition, there is a large number of events and actions, in which participation can be remotely. The cultural connection between the Donetsk People's Republic and the territories temporarily under Ukraine’s control is inseparable, despite the lines of delimitation and blockade.”- noted Natalia Nikonorova.
At the end of her speech, Acting Minister of Foreign Affairs once again stressed tense ecological situation at the city-forming enterprise “Avdeevskiy Koksohimicheskiy zavod” (Coke Plant), which throughout the conflict causes exceptional public concerns because of high anthropogenic and environmental disaster probability: “The plant has large volumes of toxic substances: benzene, sulfuric acid, phenol and others. Any ignitions that can occur due to violations of technological processes, acquire an extraordinary character. There are no planned targeted inspections of production capacities in Avdeevka, it leads to emergency situations, explosions, leaks of harmful substances etc. In addition, only one line of 4 required supplies electricity to the plant. Local residents often observe signs of fire at the plant. In nearby neighborhoods, more than 40,000 people live in the area of “Avdeevskiy Koksohimicheskiy zavod”, and the size of the environmental consequences can be catastrophic for the entire Donbass. In order to prevent an ecological disaster, we have set up a joint inspection and intend to inspect critical infrastructure facilities and hazardous industrial enterprises located in Donetsk region under Ukraine’s control.”