Amnesty accuses Ukrainian army of endangering civilians, Ukraine “outraged”

Ukraine’s military is putting civilians at risk by building military bases in schools and hospitals and launching attacks from residential areas to repel the Russian invasion, Amnesty International said last week. Thursday (August 4).

Such tactics violate international humanitarian law, the NGO warned in a statement whose findings were criticized by Kyiv, which included “disinformation and propaganda operation“. “We have documented a tendency of Ukrainian forces to endanger civilians and violate the laws of war when operating in populated areas.said Agnès Callamard, Secretary General of Amnesty International. “Being in a defensive position does not exempt the Ukrainian army from respecting international humanitarian law“, he added.

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The head of Ukrainian diplomacy, Dmytro Kouleba, said himself “not worth itby these accusations which he described as “unfair»«I am as outraged as you are by the Amnesty International report. I consider it unfairsaid Dmytro Kouleba in a video comment posted on Facebook. Dmytro Kouleba in turn accused Amnesty International of “creating a false balance between the oppressor and the victim, between the country that destroys hundreds and thousands of civilians, cities, territories and the country that desperately defends itself“.

Stop creating this false reality, where everyone is a little guilty of something and start systematically reporting the truth about what Russia really stands for today.“, he added. Soon after, the adviser to the Ukrainian presidency Mykhaïlo Podoliak assured that “people’s lives“you”PRIORITIESand that the populations of the towns near the front were evacuated. Mykhaïlo Podoliak accused Amnesty of participating in a “disinformation and propaganda campaignin the service of the Kremlin’s arguments.

Between April and July, Amnesty International researchers investigated Russian strikes in the regions of Kharkiv (east), Donbass and Mykolaiv (south-east), inspected areas affected by the strikes and interviewed survivors, witnesses and relatives of the victims. According to the NGO, these researchers found evidence that Ukrainian forces launched strikes from populated residential areas and established bases in civilian buildings in 19 towns and villages in this regions.

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Most of the residential areas where the soldiers are stationed are located miles from the front lines, Amnesty said, pointing out that other options do not endanger civilians – such as military bases or wooded area nearby – possible. The NGO indicated that as far as they know, the soldiers who settled in these residential areas did not ask the civilians to evacuate. He claimed that Ukrainian forces have built military bases in schools and hospitals.

The Ukrainian government denied the NGO’s investigation

On Twitter, the adviser to the Ukrainian presidency Mikhaïlo Podoliak assured that “people’s lives“you”Ukraine’s priorityand that the populations of the towns near the front were evacuated. “The only thing that threatens the Ukrainian people is the Russian army (…) which is going to Ukraine to commit genocide.“, he declared. “Moscow is trying to discredit the armed forces of Ukraine in the eyes of Western companies with its network of agents of influence. It is shameful that an organization like Amnesty is participating in this disinformation and propaganda campaign“. “Ukraine clearly complies with all laws of war and international humanitarian law“, he insisted in a press release.

While Amnesty has criticized these Ukrainian tactics, it insists that they do not “in no way justified the indiscriminate attack on Russiawhich hit the civilian population. The NGO said it contacted the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense about the research findings on July 29 but did not receive a response in the statement release.

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