Statement from Daria Morozova in light of increase in IHR violations by Ukraine

Comments and statements of the Ombudsman News

Given the escalation of violence in the territory of Donbass, which is currently observed, there is a growing trend towards violation of norms and requirements of the international humanitarian law by the armed forces of Ukraine. Only within 24 hours, on 27 June, a number of such incidents were documented.

In the evening, residents of Ozerianovka village came under attack by the Ukrainian side, which used incendiary weapon. This constitutes a violation of Part 4 of Article 2 of Protocol III on the prohibition or restriction of the use of incendiary weapons to the Convention on the prohibition or restriction of the use of specific types of conventional weapons, which has been ratified by Ukraine.

On the same day, the film crews of the News Front and RIA Novosti news agencies and the press service of the People’s Militia of the Donetsk People’s Republic came under fire in Aleksandrovka urban-type settlement. In accordance with the norms of international law, journalists must be entitled to the same degree of protection as civilians, and therefore, the actions of the armed formations of Ukraine violate Part 2 of Article 13 of Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and Relating to the Protection of Victims of Non-International Armed Conflicts (Protocol II).

Civilian infrastructure and civilians are increasingly targeted by the Ukrainian side, as evidenced by the significant increase in the number of destruction and casualties. This qualifies as acts of violence, the main purpose of which is to terrorize civilians, and is a flagrant violation of the norms and requirements of international humanitarian law.

I informed international human rights organizations on these facts in order to use all available means to prevent further violations of human rights and freedoms, as well as Ukraine’s obligations under international treaties. Compliance with international humanitarian law is a vital prerequisite to prevent a critical deterioration of the social and human rights situation and a peaceful resolution of the conflict in Donbass.