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HRW Scolds Kiev for Civilian Deaths Caused by Use of Indiscriminate Weapons

© Sputnik / Sergey Averin / Go to the photo bankDonetsk after shelling
Donetsk after shelling - Sputnik International
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Kiev's use of indiscriminate weapons, such as Grad rocket launchers, results in huge numbers of civilian deaths in Donbas, an HRW representative underscored.

Aftermath of shelling by Ukrainian army - Sputnik International
Shelling of Luhansk in Southeastern Ukraine Leaves 16 Wounded
MOSCOW, January 29 (Sputnik) — The Ukrainian government forces' use of indiscriminate weapons, such as Grad multiple rocket launchers, in fighting independence supporters in the southeast of the country has resulted in the killing of large numbers of civilians, a Human Rights Watch researcher said Thursday.

"The situation today remains quite tense. The Ukrainian government forces certainly use indiscriminate weapons, including Grad rocket launchers, resulting in huge numbers of civilians dying," Yulia Gorbunova said during a press conference in the Russian capital.

Luhansk resident near her house destoyed as result of the shelling by Ukraine's armed forces. - Sputnik International
HRW Bashes Kiev Over ‘Cursory’ Probe Into Cluster Bombs Use
According to Gorbunova, independence militias place their military hardware and infrastructure in residential areas, provoking Kiev to strike back, killing large numbers of local civilians.

Kiev started military action in southeastern Ukraine in mid-April, 2014, in order to suppress the local pro-independence movement. Despite a ceasefire agreement, reached by the warring sides in September, attacks continue. The confrontation has intensified in recent weeks, with repeated shelling, killing dozens of local residents in Donetsk, Mariupol and other cities.

A view shows a damaged trolleybus in Donetsk, January 22, 2015 - Sputnik International
OSCE Says East Ukraine Conflict Death Toll Exceeds 5,000
In October, HRW released a report accusing Ukrainian troops of firing cluster munitions, prohibited by a UN treaty, at residential areas. The watchdog said cluster munitions were used in the October 2, 2014 shelling of Donetsk that killed a Red Cross worker.

Last week, the UN High Human Rights Office calculated that over 5,000 people had been killed in fighting in Ukraine since April.

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