Ukrainian border guards on Friday prepared to inspect a vast convoy of Russian humanitarian aid bound for war-torn eastern Ukraine, in a compromise deal that eased the immediate prospect of a head-to-head confrontation between Russia and Ukraine.
The convoy of 262 Russian vehicles drove close to a rebel-held border checkpoint Thursday, raising the prospect that they would pass into rebel custody without any Ukrainian government inspection. That would have been treated as an invasion, Kiev and its Western allies said.
Instead, the Ukrainian military said Friday that a team of 59 border and customs officials had traveled to the Russian side of the border crossing to prepare for screening the trucks, which the Russian government has said carry nearly 2,000 tons of aid intended for civilians in Luhansk. Residents there have been without water or electricity for nearly two weeks.