More than 4 000 civilians killed in Ukraine: UN

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Dead bodies of civilians are being carried as firefighters extinguish fire at a damaged residential building that was hit by a Russian attack in Kyiv, Ukraine on March 15, 2022. (Photo by Emin Sansar/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
Dead bodies of civilians are being carried as firefighters extinguish fire at a damaged residential building that was hit by a Russian attack in Kyiv, Ukraine on March 15, 2022. (Photo by Emin Sansar/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

More than 4 000 civilians have been killed in Ukraine since Russia's invasion began on 24 February, although the true number is likely much higher, the UN rights office (OHCHR) has said.

In total, 4 031 people have been killed, including nearly 200 children, according to OHCHR, which has dozens of monitors in the country.

Most were killed by explosive weapons with a wide impact such as shelling from heavy artillery or air raids.

It did not attribute blame for the deaths.

Moscow has denied targeting civilians and has called its invasion a “special military operation” to disarm Ukraine and “denazify” it and rid it of what it has said are anti-Russian nationalists fomented by the West. Ukraine and its allies said these are baseless claims that Russia used to justify its full-scale invasion.

In its statement on Friday, the UN rights office said most of the civilian casualties recorded “were caused by the use of explosive weapons with a wide impact area, including shelling from heavy artillery and multiple launch rocket systems, and missile and air strikes.”

It added, “OHCHR believes that the actual figures are considerably higher, as the receipt of information from some locations where intense hostilities have been going on has been delayed and many reports are still pending corroboration.”



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