7A Koshytsia Street, Kyiv, 25 February 2022. Photo: Oleksandr Ratushnyak / UNDP Ukraine

The Hague, March 7, 2022 – Statement by Federico Borello, Executive Director of Center for Civilians in Conflict: 

“We condemn all attacks that have resulted in the loss of civilian life as a result of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Recent attacks documented by journalists and human rights experts indicate that Russian Armed Forces have launched indiscriminate attacks resulting in significant civilian casualties. Evidence suggests that civilians and civilian infrastructure may have been intentionally targeted in some cases. Shelling and fighting resulting in civilian casualties appear to have increased, suggesting a possible shift in armed tactics used by Russian Armed Forces aimed at causing significant civilian casualties to coerce the enemy to surrender. 

Recent images showing civilians coming under fire as they attempt to escape the city of Irpin are heartbreaking and illustrate the tragic truth of war: civilians bear the brunt of conflict. Besides, attacking civilians as they escape fighting could amount to a violation of international humanitarian law. 

While the civilian death toll varies depending on sources, there is little doubt that the number of civilian casualties is high and will keep rising as urban and populated areas continue to be under shelling and fighting. 

A full, transparent, impartial, and independent investigation into the killing of civilians must be urgently carried out by the Independent Commission of Inquiry on Ukraine established last week by the UN Human Rights Council.


For more information, please contact:   

In The Hague: Hajer Naili, Director of Communications: hnaili@civiliansinconflict.org, +33 6 03 50 53 / +1.917.889.5982 (WhatsApp) 

In Washington, D.C.: CIVIC’s Global Media team: comms@civiliansinconflict.org