Ukraine: Magnitude of civilian casualties demands investigation and accountability, Security Council hears |

Law ‘clear as crystal’

Rosemary DiCarlo emphasized: “Civilians have the right to protection from the dangers arising from military operations. Secretary-General for Political Affairs and Peacebuildingas she briefed the Council of the latest events.

International humanitarian law is very clear. ”

She paints a picture of the daily attacks that are ravaging Ukrainian cities, many seen as indiscriminate.

From February 24 to March 15, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) recorded 1,900 civilian casualties – with 726 killed, including 52 children – largely from explosive weapons in densely populated areas.

OHCHR personnel in Donetsk are monitoring developments surrounding a March 14 incident in which 20 civilians were killed by a Soviet-era Tochka-U ballistic missile that could contain cluster munitions.

Mariupol: Dead bodies on the street

Meanwhile, many residents unable to evacuate from the southeastern port city of Mariupol lack food, water, electricity and medical care, DiCarlo said, warning that “the corpses are not collected. lying on the streets of the city”.

An attack on the Mariupol theater yesterday, believed to be a bomb shelter for displaced civilians, added to the list of attacks targeting civilian structures.

The UN’s priority is to reach those trapped in the shellingincluding in eastern Ukraine, she said.

The senior UN official called for the safe movement of civilians and humanitarian supplies into besieged areas, and expressed gratitude to neighboring countries for their generosity. them in accepting refugees.

“There will be no winner in this senseless conflict,” she said.

Refugee resilience ‘remarkable’

Broadly agree, Raouf Mazou, Assistant High Commissioner for Operations at the UN refugee office, UNHCRIn less than three weeks, the number of people fleeing Ukraine to neighboring countries has increased from 520,000 to more than 3.1 million.

He described the situation as the fastest growing refugee crisis in Europe since the Second World War.

“We are humbled by the remarkable resilience of the refugees, many of whom have left their homes with nothing but a plastic bag, and by the exceptional hospitality,” said Mr. Mazou. government and host communities,” said Mr. Mazou.

Ability ‘tested and stretched’

Meanwhile, with nearly two million refugees from Ukraine, Poland has quickly become one of the largest refugee-receiving countries in the world.

Another 490,000 have fled to Romania; 350,000 to Moldova; 280,000 to Hungary; and 228,000 to Slovakia, while others have moved to Russia or Belarus.

“At the current rate of refugee flows, the capabilities of neighboring countries are being tested and expanded“He said, at the same time calling for more support.

The health effects of war will last for years

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director General of the World Health Organization (WHO), said The devastating health consequences of war will reverberate for years or decades to come.

Ukraine’s medical services have been severely disrupted by widespread destruction of water and sanitation infrastructure – and increasingly medical facilities.

Note that WHO verified 43 attacks on healthcare, with 12 people killed and 34 injured, he stressed that “attacks on healthcare are a violation of international humanitarian law – at all times.” , everywhere.”

Service interruptions pose extremely serious health risks

WHO Director said that Disruptions to services and supplies are posing an “extremely serious” risk to everyone cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes, HIV and tuberculosis – among the leading causes of death in Ukraine.

At the same time, relocation, poor housing and overcrowded living conditions can increase the risk of measles, pneumonia, and polio.

War is also exacerbating the impact of COVID-19with a drop in testing that could lead to “significant undetected transmission.”

Although the agency has established supply lines to many cities in Ukraine from its warehouse in Lviv, it still faces challenges.

Medical supplies cannot reach those in need

“We have essential supplies ready for joint UN convoys to enter difficult areas, but so far we have not been successful,” Tedros said, pointing out that The convoy to Sumy, which included a truck carrying WHO medical supplies, was unable to enter.

He told the Ambassadors that the loads ready for Mariupol were still in the staging areas and could not proceed.

“Access to these and other areas is now critical,” the top WHO official stressed, urging the Council to work on a ceasefire. immediate and a political solution.

Neighboring Poland

Earlier today, Moscow refused a order equal International Court of Justicethe highest court of the United Nations, to stop the attack.

The UN Ambassador to Poland, Krzysztof Maria Szczerski, described Russia’s atrocities as “100% a war of choice”.

Poland has witnessed first-hand the devastating humanitarian consequences of war and will continue to accept refugees in a spirit of solidarity, regardless of their nationality, race or religious beliefs.

Szczerski called on Russia to change its military approach, calling for an immediate ceasefire and a humanitarian approach.

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