US accuses Kremlin of war crimes by bombing Ukrainian theater that housed children

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken meets with US Embassy staff at the Swissotel hotel in Tallinn, Estonia on March 8, 2022.

Olivier Douliery | Reuters

WASHINGTON – U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Thursday that he believes Russian forces have committed war crimes in Ukraine, citing multiple instances of attacks on civilians.

“President Biden said that, in his view, war crimes were committed in Ukraine. Personally, I agree. Intentionally targeting civilians is a war crime,” Blinken told a news conference. at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

He added: “After all, the devastation of the past three weeks, I find it very difficult to conclude that the Russians are doing otherwise.

On Wednesday, President Joe Biden Calls Russian President Vladimir Putin a “war criminal” for his gratuitous war with Ukraine.

This is the first time Biden has publicly branded Putin with that term.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said on Wednesday that Biden was speaking from his heart about what he had seen on the news, which she described as “the barbaric act of a brutal dictator. “

She noted that there is a separate legal process underway at the State Department to determine whether Putin violated international law and committed war crimes.

The country’s top diplomat described an exhaustive list of reports in which Russian forces targeted Ukrainian civilians.

“Russian forces have bombed a theater in Mariupol where hundreds of people have taken shelter. The word children has been written in Russian in giant white letters on the sidewalk outside the building so you can tell from the air. that there are children inside,” Blinken explains.

“Russian forces also opened fire on 10 civilians waiting in line for bread,” he said, adding that the US had observed a “long list of attacks on civilian sites and demilitarization across Ukraine”.

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