Wednesday Oct 4, 2023
Wednesday Oct 4, 2023

Russian attacks in Ukraine are "genocide of Ukrainians", says FM Dmytro Kuleba

2022 Oct 22, 20:29, Kyiv
Ukraine Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba (Photo : ANI))

Ukraine Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba on Saturday accused Moscow of "genocide of Ukrainians", hours after Russian strikes reportedly targeted the country's critical civilian infrastructure.

Russia on Saturday had launched a missile attack targeting critical infrastructure after air raid sirens blared across Ukraine, according to media reports.

"Deliberate strikes on Ukraine's critical civilian infrastructure are part of Russia's genocide of Ukrainians. Article 2(c) of the Genocide Convention: Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part," Kuleba tweeted.

Ukraine's foreign minister said Russian missiles aimed at critical civilian infrastructure on Saturday, some of which were intercepted by Ukraine's air defence.

"We have intercepted part of them, others hit targets. Air defence saves lives. There should not be a minute of delay in capitals deciding on air defence systems for Ukraine," he said in an earlier tweet.

Russia has reportedly intensified its attacks on infrastructure across Ukraine since October 10, damaging the country's power stations in an apparent response to an attack on the Crimea bridge.

On Friday, the UN's political affairs chief said Russia's military escalation in Ukraine will lead to more suffering worldwide and must be reversed.

Rosemary DiCarlo was briefing the Security Council alongside the Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for Ukraine, Denise Brown, who said that with each passing day, UN teams on the ground were facing "new dimensions to the emergency."

"We are on a path of further escalation, which can only cause more suffering to the people of Ukraine, Russia, and the rest of the world," DiCarlo told ambassadors, as quoted by UN News.

Warning against further talk of any nonconventional weapons use on the battlefield, she singled out the risk posed by military activity around the Russian-held Zaphorizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant.

As of October 18, official UN figures show 15,956 civilian casualties so far: 6,322 killed and 9,634 injured since Russia's invasion of 24 February. At least 397 children have been killed in the war since 24 February. The actual figures are likely much higher, she said.

The Political Affairs chief said Russia's new missile offensive targeting civilian infrastructure in towns and cities, since the explosion on the bridge to Crimea, was a concerning development.

These attacks threaten to expose millions of civilians to extreme hardship and even life-endangering conditions over the freezing winter, she said, reminding that under international humanitarian law, attacks targeting civilians and civilian infrastructure are prohibited.


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