MOSCOW, December 4 /TASS/. The admittance by the Human Rights Watch non-governmental organization that forbidden weapons were used in a civil conflict in eastern Ukraine confirms the facts contained in the Russian Foreign Ministry’s White Book published on Wednesday, Konstantin Dolgov, Russian Foreign Ministry Ombudsman for Human Rights, Democracy and the Rule of Law, said.
“It is the first time that Human Rights Watch has clearly admitted that the Ukrainian army used Grads and other banned weapons against peaceful civilians in Donbas,” Dolgov wrote in Twitter on Wednesday.
“It confirms the facts contained in the Russian Foreign Ministry White Book on crimes in Ukraine. The human rights activists should exert pressure on the West and Kiev to make them curb those crimes,” Dolgov said.
Ukraine’s Defense Ministry meanwhile denied on Wednesday that Ukrainian troops had used cluster bombs during a security operation against civilians in Ukraine’s Donbas region.
“In view of active dissemination by separate media outlets of reports that the Ukrainian army used cluster munitions in the Donetsk and Lugansk regions, the Defense Ministry of Ukraine is officially stating that this information does not correspond to the facts,” the Ministry’s press service said in its statement.
The Ukrainian Defense Ministry claims that the Ukrainian Armed Forces have never used and are not using ammunition, including cluster munitions, banned under international treaties.
Earlier on Wednesday, Kenneth Roth, the Human Rights Watch executive director, told a briefing in Kiev that the organization could prove the facts of using cluster bombs by Ukrainian troops in eastern Ukraine.
He said the Human Rights Watch investigation clearly showed that the Ukrainian side was to blame. But Ukraine’s prosecutors, Roth said, had failed to conduct a proper investigation.