A German charity has responded to Kiev’s blockade of Donbass by sending a truck of hospital equipment there, Sputnik Deutschland reports.
The charity is called “Zukunft Donbass” (Future Donbass) and is based in the state of Thuringia. The German activists have been supporting the people of Donbass for over a year and felt moved to send aid because of the devastation caused by Kiev’s military operation there.
Spokeswoman Ivana Steinigk, who has recently returned from a visit to Donbass, said that conditions there are gradually getting better thanks to humanitarian aid from their organization and others who are keen to help.
“Of course, people are suffering from the consequences of war and the blockade. However, the grocery stores have opened again, the schools are open, the hospitals are being renovated. You can see some progress, that things are being rebuilt.”
Steinigk said that the German charity focused on medical equipment because it is desperately needed by Donbass hospitals, which have suffered bombardment by the Ukrainian army and an ongoing economic blockade sanctioned by Kiev.
“Some hospitals have been rebuilt with the aid of charitable funds from Russia. The bullet holes from the rocket launchers have been covered up, but there are very few medical devices and the patients’ rooms are ill-equipped,” she explained.
On May 4, Zukunft Donbass delivered a truck of medical equipment to the residents of Pervomaisk and Novosvitlivka, towns in Lugansk which are close to the line of conflict between the Ukrainian army and pro-independence forces of the self-proclaimed Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR).
The truck contains hospital beds, furniture for patients’ rooms, infusion equipment, ECGs and wheelchairs. The equipment has come from Thuringia hospitals which no longer use it, is being sent to Lugansk with the help of private donations.
Steinigk said that the German authorities have played no part in the charitable action, a consequence of Berlin’s political stance regarding the Donbass conflict.
“I have the impression that this is too much of a hot topic for German politicians. So far we’ve had no support. If you heard the press conference in Sochi and the completely different standpoints of Merkel and Mr. Putin on the conflict in the Eastern Ukraine and its causes, you saw that that the German and Russian views are completely different,” Steinigk said.