Amnesty International wrote that Ukraine is putting its citizens at risk by turning residential areas, villages, homes, apartment buildings, hospitals and schools into military targets. Research carried out by the human rights organization between April and July.
Because such places have become military targets, Amnesty International says countless civilians have been killed or injured. In doing so, the military is violating international humanitarian law.
“The fact that the country was forced to defend itself does not absolve the Ukrainian army from its obligation to respect international humanitarian law,” the new report said.
Amnesty International asserts that this “in no way justifies” indiscriminate Russian attacks. “All parties to the conflict must at all times distinguish between military objectives and civilian objects.”
Amnesty International chief sees ‘pattern’ in areas under investigation
According to the head of Amnesty International Agnes Callamard, there is a “pattern” in the investigated regions of Kharkiv, Donetsk Basin and Mykolaiv. There, the Ukrainian military set up bases and deployed weapons systems, which were used to shoot at the enemy from, for example, schools and hospitals. Subsequent Russian attacks on Ukrainian populated areas killed civilians and destroyed much civilian infrastructure.
For example, researchers have found residential areas with soldiers. They were miles from the front lines. There were also plenty of places in the area where soldiers could sit without approaching civilians.
At the front, Ukrainian soldiers were seen starting their offensive from a populated area. It happened in at least nineteen cities and villages.
Amnesty said there was no indication that the army had requested the civilians’ evacuation. Nor were civilians assisted in this.
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