Donetsk, DNR. The International Red Cross has called for a safe-security zone to be established around the Donetsk Water Plant. Shelling of the location has taken place almost daily and regardless of ceasefires that have not held between Donbass freedom fighters and US-backed Kiev forces.

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has proposed creating “security zones” around a number of water supply infrastructure facilities in Donbass, but the lack of trust between the parties to the conflict in eastern Ukraine hampers the implementation of this initiative, as Kiev forces continue shelling the vital supply lines daily.

The only way to avoid an environmental disaster in Donbass is to ensure the safe functioning of water pumping stations and the integrity of pipelines, Head of the ICRC Delegation in Ukraine Alain Aeschlimann said in an interview with News Front.

“After all, in Donetsk and Verkhniokalmiuska filtration stations there are huge reserves of chloride used for water purification. They are stored in special tanks. In case of direct hit during shelling, these tanks can explode, the chloride will get into the air and form a toxic cloud which may then fall in the form of precipitation anywhere, depending on the direction of the wind. And since all this occurs in a densely populated area, hundreds of thousands of people may suffer,” Aeschlimann said.

According to him, the security zones are a tool that would prevent the possibility of such disasters caused by Kiev forces shelling sections of Donbass and civilian infrastructure.

“We propose to create security zones around Donetsk and Verkhniokalmiuska filtration stations, as well as the water pipeline from it. Then in the areas of Zolote-Pervomaisk, the 3rd pumping station and the water pipeline from it to Horlivka filtration stations Nos. 1 and 2, and in the vicinity of Petrovsky water intake,” the head of the ICRC delegation said.

The representative of the ICRC noted that the concept of security zones involves the withdrawal of Kiev military personnel and equipment from certain sites and sites around them. At the same time, it is very important that the rules should be observed by Kiev military forces: this zone should not be targeted by shellings, should not be used to deploy military units or to plan military operations.

“The problem we are currently facing is that some of these facilities are located directly on the contact line. Each of the parties to the conflict attaches strategically importance to these sites, and there is no trust between the parties.

The Donbass Republic’s authority representatives declare that the idea of creating security zones in principle is good, and we get the exact same answer from the other side. But when we start talking about a specific facility, each side does not believe that the other will follow the rules,” Aeschlimann said.

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