Wednesday, May 14, 2014

No one issued Kiev mandate to use UN helicopters, situation requires comprehensive investigation

Situation with ukrainian servicemen using helicopters with un emblems requires comprehensive investigation, no one issued kyiv mandate to use such aircraft, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov said. Russia insists that the situation on the use of helicopters with UN emblems by Ukrainian servicemen, in particular outside Kramatorsk, be investigated and is in close contact with the UN secretariat regarding this issue.

"We are currently sorting this situation out because the use in the purposes - and we do not even know in which purposes but if it was related to some forceful actions against the blocked Ukrainian cities, in particular, Kramatorsk, it is absolutely incompatible with the UN goals and these helicopters should be used solely with the permission of and in accordance with the UN mandate. No one has issued such a mandate on the use of UN aircraft regarding Ukraine," Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov told Interfax.
Ukraine had no right to use UN-labelled helicopters outside Kramatorsk – UN 
The UN has made an exclusive comment for the RT TV channel on helicopters bearing UN markings in the sky above Kramatorsk. The UN press-secretary explained that using UN-labelled vehicles is allowed only when acting under the UN instructions. As there is no information about such instructions, this means that the Ukraine had no right to those actions.
Associate Spokesperson for the UN Secretary General Eri Kaneko told RT that the Department of Peacekeeping Operations and the Department of Field Support are already in contact with the Ukrainian authorities on this subject.
While commenting on Kiev’s use of helicopters with UN logos, Eri Kaneko pointed out that responsibility for erasing UN markings from vehicles usually rests with the UN member-state that lends the vehicles to a country needing them.
Countries sending military contingents for UN operations and lending equipment to peace-making missions are to erase all UN markings from the equipment on its return to the country of origin or after the UN stops using it. In addition, agreements signed between the UN and countries sending military contingents for peace-making operations provide that "the government has the right to use aircraft with UN markings only for UN-mission flights," the UN press-service told RT.
UN to verify information about helicopters with their logo near Kramatorsk
United Nations examines recent media reports that the helicopters with their identification marks have been involved in the Ukrainian military operation near Kramatorsk. If it will be confirmed, it would mean that the Kiev authorities violated agreements concluded with international organization, the press service of the Department for Peacekeeping Operations of the United Nations stated.

"UN agencies are in contact with the Ukrainian authorities on this issue, " the spokesperson added.
The Department for Peacekeeping Operations stressed that the states provide aircrafts and other equipment to peacekeeping missions "should get rid of all UN logos and markings as soon as it (equipment) returns home and no longer used for official purposes of the world organization."
"Moreover, each letter of the order, to sign with the troop-contributing countries, clearly states that their governments can use the UN symbols only for operations that were requested by the United Nations," the Department for Peacekeeping Operations noted.
Earlier media reported that at least three helicopters colored white with UN identification marks were used in military operation near Kramatorsk.
There were three combat Mi-24 and one Mi-8 helicopters. Ukrainian helicopters were involved in several UN peacekeeping missions particularly in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
A video of a UN-marked Mil Mi-24 strike helicopter was published on Tuesday by LifeNews television. It said its correspondents covering Kiev’s military operation in the Donetsk Region took the video near Kramatorsk. LifeNews said at least three combat Mi-24 and one transport Mi-8 helicopters carrying UN colors were spotted in the area.
Self-defense units in Slavyansk, Kramatorsk claim to have killed 8 Ukrainian gov't troops, destroyed several armored vehicles
Self-defense units opposing the de facto Kiev authorities in Slavyansk and Kramatorsk, the Donetsk region of Ukraine, claim to have killed at least 8 troops and destroyed several armored vehicles belonging to the government forces early on Wednesday.
"There was another armed clash at night, and the enemy again tried to launch an offensive at about 1 o'clock. However, we managed to rebuff the attack and destroy several enemy armored vehicles. Eight of their men have been killed and seven wounded. Unfortunately, we also have losses," Vyacheslav Ponomaryov, the people's mayor of Slavyansk, told Interfax on Wednesday.
Ukrainian security forces attacked several areas outside Slavyansk and Kramatorsk in the early hours of Wednesday, Ponomaryov said.
"They used armored personnel carriers, they have fortified firing points there, and they used heavy mortars in the village of Andriyivka. They mainly fight on the outskirts and fear to enter the city," he said.
Ponomaryov said also that the situation in both Slavyansk and Kramatorsk was calm on Wednesday morning.
"Everything has been quiet since morning. There's been some shooting now and then, but we've got used to it," he said.

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