UN: Several hundred people were executed in the Donbas over the last two years

Several hundred people were executed in the Donbas region. The report of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights stated through their press service that the killings in Ukraine from January 2014 to May 2016 were “fuelled by the inflow of foreign fighters and weapons from the Russian Federation, accounting for the majority of violations of the right to life in Ukraine over the last two years.”

The report, which was prepared by the United Nations Human Rights Monitoring Mission in Ukraine, states that the armed conflict in certain districts of Donetsk and Luhansk regions claimed up to 2,000 civilian lives. "Close to 90 percent of conflict-related, civilian deaths have resulted from indiscriminate shelling of residential areas,” the message said.

Some of the killings may amount to war crimes or crimes against humanity. In general, the report concludes that “impunity for killings remains rampant, encouraging their perpetuation and undermining prospects for justice.”

More than 60 cases focus specifically on alleged killings of civilians and people otherwise protected under international humanitarian law, in the conflict zone. "Significant numbers of people, including civilians, have also been summarily executed or died in custody, with most such killings occurring in 2014 and early 2015,” the document says.

According to the report, armed groups mainly executed individuals who had or were believed to have vocal ‘pro-unity’ views or to support Ukrainian forces. Meanwhile, Ukrainian forces targeted people based on their alleged affiliation with or support for armed groups or for their “separatist” or “pro-Russian” views.

“The report also documents armed groups and Government forces being summarily killed. Armed groups have, in some cases, resorted to execution as punishment for crimes or disciplinary acts for misconduct in their own ranks,” stated the message.

  Ukraine, Donbas, UN, victims