youUkrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has hit back at Amnesty International after the human rights group accused Ukraine in a report of endangering civilians by basing troops in residential areas.
In his overnight video address on Thursday, Mr. Zelensky took a swipe at the organization, claiming it was trying to “shift responsibility from the aggressor to the victim.”
“There may be some condition – not even hypothetically – under which a Russian attack on Ukraine is justified,” Zelensky said.
“Aggression against our state is unprovoked, invasive and overtly terrorist. And if someone reports that the victim and the aggressor are the same in something, if data about the victim is analyzed and what the aggressor was doing at the time ignored, it cannot be tolerated.”
According to Amnesty’s report, Ukrainian troops in Kharkov, Donbas and Mykolaiv had in some cases set up bases and used weapon systems in populated residential areas, including schools and hospitals, in violation of international humanitarian law.
“We have documented a pattern of Ukrainian armed forces endangering civilians and violating the laws of war when operating in populated areas,” said Agnes Callamard, Amnesty International’s secretary general.
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