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    July 14, 2017

    UN notes doubling of civilian casualties in Donbass*

    July 14, 2017 - Fort Russ News -

    Sputnik France, translated by Tom Winter -
    "Donbass: Dramatic rise in the number of civilian victims"

    In 2017, the number of civilian casualties at the Donbass doubled compared to the previous year, according to the UN.

    The number of civilian casualties in the Donbass increased sharply in 2017, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad Zeid al-Hussein said.

    "This year, from January 1 to June 18, the human rights observation mission in Ukraine registered 375 civilian casualties, with the conflict resulting in 67 deaths and 308 injuries. This is an increase of 74% compared to the same period of 2016," said the official speaking at the 35th session of the UN Human Rights Council.

    The High Commissioner said the shelling alone left 31 killed and 178 wounded among the civilian population, twice as many as in 2016 (12 dead and 76 wounded).

    "According to the statistics, the nature of the conflict has changed. It is growing in intensity as the two sides are located nearby, and heavy weapons, soldiers and members of armed groups are deployed very often in civilian residential areas near civilian infrastructure. At the same time, violations of the ceasefire regime, which are tending to increase, indicate a lack of political will to end the conflict," said the High Commissioner.

    In 2014, the Ukrainian authorities launched a military operation against the self-proclaimed republics of Lugansk and Donbass, which proclaimed their independence after the coup in Ukraine in February of that year. 

    According to the UN, the conflict has already killed 10,000 people. The settlement of the conflict was called for, by the contact group in Minsk, which, since September 2014, has adopted three documents regulating efforts to de-escalate the conflict. 

    However, despite the ceasefire agreements, the exchanges of fire continue.
    _______________________________
    *But neglects to say who is killing them.
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