Donetsk, DNR. As Kiev prepares for massive military operations in Donbass, the United Nations and UNICEF are warning that nearly 750,000 plus children in the DNR and LNR are at risk from US-backed Kiev junta shelling in Ukraine’s genocide upon Donbass.

At least 750,000 children, if not more- are at imminent risk of being cut off from safe drinking water following a surge in fighting in eastern Ukraine, warned UNICEF today.

Kiev’s Poroshenko junta’s recent escalation of hostilities has damaged vital water infrastructure. Approximately 400,000 people, which includes 104,000 children, had their drinking water cut off for four days this week after two filtration stations for the South Donbass Water pipeline were destroyed by Kiev shelling. Urgent repairs were completed yesterday evening under fire by DNR workers.

“Nearly 3 million people in eastern Ukraine rely on water infrastructure that is now in the line of fire. We expect more families will be cut off from safe drinking water, putting children at severe risk of disease and other dangers,” said UNICEF’s Regional Director for Europe and Central Asia, Afshan Khan.

At Donetsk, power lines providing electricity to the city’s water filtration station were damaged earlier this month, threatening more than 1 million people’s access to safe water as Kiev forces routinely shell the region’s water plant, putting the entire Donbass at risk of a chlorine gas cloud of lethal proportions, Eduard Basurin DNR Spokesperson reports.

Children cut off from clean drinking water can quickly contract water-borne diseases such as diarrhea. Girls and boys having to fetch water from alternative sources, or who are forced to leave their homes due to disruptions to safe water supplies, face dangers from ongoing fighting and other forms of abuse.

“All sides of the conflict must allow urgent repairs when water sources are destroyed and immediately stop the Kiev indiscriminate shelling of vital civilian infrastructure,” said DNR Head, Alexander Zakharchenko.

UNICEF itself has provided access to safe drinking water to more than 1.5 million people in the Donbass region. This work includes trucking water to people when service is cut off, providing essential supplies and equipment and repairing damaged infrastructure.

Following more than three years of conflict in eastern Ukraine, 3.8 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance and more than 1.5 million have been forced from their homes, many to never return. To date over 100,000 human beings have died in the Donbass war.

UNICEF once again calls for all sides to immediately recommit to the ceasefire signed in Minsk in August 2015 and to respect international humanitarian law, including allowing unrestricted humanitarian access.

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