Amnesty International Claims Ukraine Stationing Forces in Residential Areas

Human rights group Amnesty International claimed that the Ukrainian government is stationing its armed forces in residential areas across the country, endangering civilians.

Amnesty International researchers said they found evidence of Ukrainian military operations in at least 19 towns and villages while looking at Russian attacks in the Kharkiv, Donbas, and Mykolaiv regions of Ukraine between April and July. According to the report, satellite pictures verified the discovery.

“The Ukrainian military has endangered Ukrainian civilians by establishing bases and operating weapons systems in residential areas – including in schools and hospitals – as it has sought to repel the Russian invasion,” said Amnesty.

Amnesty asserted that Ukraine built bases near residences and apartment complexes without warning or supporting the people in evacuating.

The report also found that Ukraine had set up military stations in 22 of the 29 schools it had investigated in the Donbas and Mykolaiv regions.

Amnesty urged the Ukrainian military to “distinguish between military objectives and civilian objects and take all feasible precautions” and immediately stop operating out of areas with a high concentration of civilians.

Agnès Callamard, Amnesty International’s Secretary General, said, “Militaries should never use hospitals to engage in warfare and should only use schools or civilian homes as a last resort when there are no viable alternatives.

Amnesty has previously charged Russia with breaking numerous international laws throughout the conflict, however, the group declared on Wednesday that the purported transgressions by Ukraine “in no way justify Russia’s indiscriminate attacks.”

“Being in a defensive position does not exempt the Ukrainian military from respecting international humanitarian law,” said Callamard.

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