Responding to need for relief aid, UN resumes operations in Chechnya

Responding to need for relief aid, UN resumes operations in Chechnya

Responding to the intensifying need for relief aid in the Republic of Chechnya, Russian Federation, the United Nations today resumed its humanitarian activities in the area despite persisting security concerns.

The decision to restart work in Chechnya followed extensive consultations with the Russian Government, the donor community, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and affected civilians, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

Operations in Chechnya were suspended on 29 July following the abduction of the representative of an NGO called Druzhba, which was working with the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in the region.

The kidnapped staffer, Nina Davidovich, remains in detention, and the UN today reaffirmed its solidarity with her and with the head of the Médecins Sans Frontières-Switzerland mission in Dagestan, Arjan Erkel, who was abducted in on 12 August.

“The United Nations remains deeply concerned about the situation in the North Caucasus and the risks undertaken by humanitarian workers underlined by the recent abductions,” OCHA said in a statement released in Moscow. “The UN condemns these acts, and calls for the immediate release of the two humanitarian workers.”