Today we present the report ‘Crossing the line of contact’ for July 2019. It is based on data collected during 45 visits to the five entry-exit checkpoints (EECPs) in February 2019. More statistical data can be found on the Eastern Ukraine Checkpoint Monitoring Online Dashboard.
· Première Urgence Internationale (PUI) reported about the increase in the number of people seeking medical assistance at Marinka EECP. The number of people fainting at Stanytsia Luhanska is still alarmingly high. On July 1-3 this number was in peak, surpassing 80 persons per day.
· A free bus route for older people and people with disabilities at Stanytsia Luhanska was launched in the GCA by Luhansk Oblast administration on July 15. The share of complaints about long distance to walk at this EECP decreased by 43% (from 73% in June to 30% in July), following the launch.
· On July 21 at around 12:00 an unexploded mine was found by the SES at Maiorske EECP, causing a suspension of operation on July 21 (partially) and 22.
· Minor changes in demographics were observed in comparison to June. The share of younger respondents increased by 8% due to the vacation season (vacation was one of the three most common reasons for crossings among respondents aged 18-34 in July).
· The share of respondents who were concerned about long waiting times in July was 10% higher than in June. The sharpest increase was at Stanytsia Luhanska (9% to 56%).
The report is based on the results of a survey conducted by R2P at the five EECPs to enter the NGCA and administered on a regular basis since June 2017. The survey is a part of the monitoring of violations of rights of conflict-affected populations within the framework of the project ‘Advocacy, Protection and Legal Assistance to IDPs’ implemented by R2P, with the support of UNHCR. The purpose of the survey is to explore reasons and concerns of those traveling from the NGCA to the GCA, as well as conditions and risks associated with crossing the line of contact through EECPs. The information collected in the survey helps identify protection needs, gaps and trends, and provides an evidentiary basis for advocacy efforts.