Terrorists Hold 135 Orphans Hostage as Human Shield - Shkiriak

Illegal armed groups continue to hold orphans hostage as human shields.

This was stated by Adviser to the Interior Minister Zorian Shkiriak, Censor.NET reports citing Interfax-Ukraine.

"Unfortunately, our attempts to resolve the issue of evacuating the children from the conflict zone in the Donetsk region have not yielded any results so far. The DPR militants categorically prohibit the transfer of children from the ATO area," Shkiriak.

He noted that first of all we are talking about 135 sick children from Donetsk city and Donetsk regional orphanages (41 and 48 children, respectively), as well as Makiivka orphanage Maliatko (46) with HIV-infected children.

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The total number of children, including orphans and boarding school students requiring immediate evacuation from the Donetsk region is 323.

Shkiriak said that the representatives of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic block any attempt to resolve the issue, continue blackmailing and threatening the staff and prohibit the evacuation.

"However, together with head of the Regional State Administration Serhii Taruta, with the participation of several negotiating groups who work around the clock, we are doing everything possible to evacuate the children and move them to a safe area under the guardianship of the state," the representative of the Interior Ministry assured.

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According to him, all the conditions of stay, medication, nurses and teachers are ready for the reception of children in other regions and the liberated cities of the Donetsk region.

"I want to emphasize and formally warn that anyone who interferes with the evacuation of children and assists the terrorists in this matter will be identified and severely punished in accordance with the laws of Ukraine. This is a particularly grave crime, because it threatens the lives of our children," Shkiriak stated.

Источник: https://en.censor.net.ua/n295665