UNITED NATIONS (Sputnik) — During a Security Council meeting earlier Tuesday on women, peace and security, Iryna Herashchenko, Ukraine’s delegate to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, made allegations of human-rights abuses and civilian casualties, particularly among women and children, due to Russian military action in eastern Ukraine.
"The conflict in the east of Ukraine would have been resolved long ago were it not for Kiev's numerous attempts to twist and distort the Minsk agreements signed a year and a half ago," Churkin said.
Herashchenko said that over the past two years, at least 495 women have died in the Donbass territory, and she cited the case of Nadezhda Savchenko, a Ukrainian military pilot who was detained by Russia for over two years and released in May.
Churkin also said that, following her release, Savchenko recommended that Ukrainian authorities apologize to the people of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions — advice that he said Kiev did not heed due to a lack of “political courage.”
In February 2015, a peace agreement between Ukraine’s warring parties was signed in Minsk, the capital of Belarus. One of the agreement’s provisions is an all-for-all prisoner exchange. In May, Russian President Vladimir Putin pardoned Savchenko on her conviction by a Russian court as an accomplice in the murder of two Russian journalists in Donbass.