Representatives of a Czech NGO were expelled from separatist-controlled areas of eastern Ukraine

The Czech non-governmental organization People in Need (PIN) reported on its website that the self-proclaimed authorities of Donetsk revoked accreditation for the organization to work in the region. The representatives of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic came to the local office of People in Need on November 26 to announce its decision.

They didn’t give a reason for the revocation of accreditation. A warehouse belonging to the Czech organization containing humanitarian supplies was sealed on the same day, and foreign volunteers were ordered to leave the territory of Ukraine controlled by separatists within 24 hours.

The non-governmental organization noted that the closure of its office, which has supplied humanitarian assistance to hundreds of thousands of citizens in eastern Ukraine on both sides of the frontline since 2014, could have negative consequences for the most vulnerable members of the population affected by the military conflict in eastern Ukraine.

As PIN emphasized, only one other organization was engaged in providing humanitarian assistance in the territories of the self-proclaimed Republics of the Donbas. This was in reference to the International Committee of the Red Cross, Deutsche Presse-Agentur noted. The director of PIN, Simon Panek, stressed that tens of thousands of people who receive humanitarian assistance are in particular need because of the freezing winter temperatures.

According to Panek, almost half a million citizens in the region controlled by separatists have received a month’s food ration and more than 100,000 people have benefited from the assistance of a separate program for shelter and restoration of residential houses; almost the same number of people gained access to safe drinking water in 2016 alone.

The short-term plans of the nonprofit organization included the installation of windows in more than 500 houses and flats, the website of People in Need notes. Humanitarian assistance, which is distributed by PIN, is provided by a dozen European and international organizations, including the United Nations, the authorities of Switzerland and Czech Republic, and the European Commission.

  Ukraine, DPR, Donbas, humanitarian help