ICRC head arrives in Ukraine

8 December 2022, 07:42 PM
Mirjana Spoljaric arrived in Ukraine for a four-day visit (Photo:icrc.org)

Mirjana Spoljaric arrived in Ukraine for a four-day visit (Photo:icrc.org)

President of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) Mirjana Spoljaric arrived in Ukraine on a working visit, she wrote on Twitter on Dec. 8.

“I’ve arrived in Ukraine for a four-day visit: here civilians are paying an enormous price in the deadly hostilities,” Spoljaric tweeted.

“Today I’ll meet with people in Mykolayiv and Kherson Oblast who are facing a desperate winter – and meet the ICRC in Ukraine and the Ukrainian Red Cross teams working to help.”

Video of day

In early November, Ukrainian Ombudsperson Dmytro Lubynets said the ICRC had actually “removed itself” from fulfilling its duties.

“The ICRC... which is supposed to monitor places of detention of prisoners of war and civilian hostages, doesn’t receive Russia’s permission to do so,” he said.

“In this way, in my view, they actually removed themselves from fulfilling their mandate. On the one hand, they aren’t allowed (to do their work), and we understand that. On the other hand, they don’t even publicly say that they aren’t given permission. In their reports, they don’t even mention Russia.”

In October, Ukraine called on the ICRC to send a mission to a Russian prisoner-of-war camp in occupied Olenivka, Donetsk Oblast, where at least 40 Ukrainian prisoners had been killed as a result of a Russian false flag attack on July 29.

Presidential chief-of-staff Andriy Yermak stated that if the ICRC did not fulfill its mandate to oversee prisoner conditions, Ukraine, together with its partners, would form their own expert group on the matter.

After that, the Red Cross announced it “shares the disappointment” of the Ukrainian government, and asked for immediate access to all prisoners of war.

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