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Russia rejects Australian allegations over Ukraine aid

Posted on Aug 14 2014 | IANS

Moscow, Aug 14 : Moscow Wednesday refuted Canberra's claims that the Russian humanitarian aid to eastern Ukraine is a disguise for military intervention in the country.

"Russia sees as unacceptable the groundless statements of the Australian government which absurdly claim that humanitarian aid for the population of the Ukraine's southeastern regions could be used as a pretext for the Russian 'military intervention' to the neighbouring country," Xinhua quoted a Russian foreign ministry statement as saying.

Moscow pointed at Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop as one who has "come too far" in these "irresponsible statements".

Moscow also slammed Bishop for her allegations that Russia was responsible for bringing down the Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17.

"Her position presupposes building bridges between countries, not destroying them," the Itar-Tass news agency quoted the ministry as saying.

According to the Australian media, Bishop said: "Australia would condemn in the strongest possible terms any effort by Russia to enter Ukraine under the guise of some kind of humanitarian mission."

Earlier Wednesday, Ukrainian Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said Kiev would not allow the Russian convoy to cross to the Ukrainian territory, and said Kiev considered the humanitarian convoy a "provocation".

A total of 280 Russian trucks carrying around 2,000 tons of humanitarian aid are expected to reach Ukrainian border late Wednesday.

Kiev has repeatedly blamed Moscow for inciting the separatist unrest in eastern Ukraine, which Russia consistently denies.

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