The Red Cross should expel its Russian affiliate over its fundraising efforts to support the families of mobilized reservists and allegedly the reservists themselves, a senior Ukrainian official insisted on Tuesday.
Dmitry Lubinets, who holds the post of commissioner for human rights in Ukraine’s parliament, accused the Russian Red Cross of backing the partial mobilization, which was announced by President Vladimir Putin last month.
By providing assistance to the mobilization efforts, the organization “supports a bloody war” in Ukraine, he added.
- As a result, Lubinets claimed that the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, as well as the International Committee of the Red Cross, should expel their Russian branch and strip it of its signature emblem.
- The official went on to stress that “social protection of the families of military personnel who went to war in a foreign independent and sovereign country cannot be humane,” adding that this would only “increase the number of civilians who will be tortured and killed in Ukraine.”
His comments come a day after the Ukrainian Red Cross accused its Russian counterpart of “repeatedly violating the principle of neutrality” by helping Moscow’s military personnel.
It urged its international partners to “take strict measures” to stop such actions.
In early October, the Russian Red Cross announced “centralized fundraising” to provide humanitarian aid to the families of Russian service members, including those who had been mobilized.
In a statement, Pavel Savchuk, the organization’s chair, noted that “the families of the mobilized citizens are now facing a number of difficulties,” given that many worry about their loved ones who are now involved in the conflict. Some people may also be in need of financial or humanitarian aid, he added.
“Therefore, it is very important to support them now,” he stressed.
The International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement is a global humanitarian organization of 80 million people that helps those facing disaster, conflict and health and social problems.
- The International Committee of the Red Cross, which is part of the movement, has been working in Ukraine since 2014, after Viktor Yanukovich, the nation’s democratically elected president, was overthrown following violent riots in Kiev, which triggered an armed conflict in eastern Ukraine.
Header:Red Cross workers embrace each other after a resupply mission to residents who cannot leave their homes, in Kharkov, Ukraine. © Getty Images/MARCUS YAM/LOS ANGELES TIMES