Russian humanitarian aid headed to besieged Ukraine city - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Russian humanitarian aid headed to besieged Ukraine city

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Russian aid was held up for days at the Ukraine border. (Source: CBS) Russian aid was held up for days at the Ukraine border. (Source: CBS)

UKRAINE-RUSSIA BORDER (CBS) - Trucks carrying what was believed to be humanitarian aid from Russia began moving through Ukrainian customs late on Thursday.

The convoy had been held up at the border for a week, in part because of safety concerns and Ukrainian fears that the convoy's arrival could halt the Ukraine military's advance.

The trucks in the 200-vehicle convoy were expected to cross into Ukraine on Friday morning on their way to Luhansk, a city with a war-reduced population of a quarter-million people, 12 miles from the Russian border.

Luhansk has been under siege for 19 days, lacking basic amenities like running water or electricity.

Residents there are struggling to survive, the International Committee of the Red Cross said on Thursday following a visit a day earlier.

The Red Cross has said it needs assurances of safe passage from all sides to bring in the supplies and set up distribution points, so even without a formal cease-fire, Ukrainian government forces could be severely constrained in their movements once the trucks begin moving.

Ukraine has accused Russia of arming and supporting the separatists since fighting began in mid-April, a charge Russia has denied.

Copyright 2014 CBS. All rights reserved.

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