19:36 21.11.2023

UN: Death toll of civilians in Ukraine exceeds 10,000; there are currently no completely safe places in country

2 min read

Since Russia's full-scale armed attack on Ukraine, at least 10,000 cases of civilian deaths have been recorded, more than 560 of which were children, as well as more than 18,500 cases of civilian injuries, the UN Human Rights Monitoring Mission in Ukraine said.

"Some 10,000 civilian deaths is a grim milestone for Ukraine,” said Danielle Bell, who heads the monitoring mission. “The Russian Federation's war against Ukraine, now entering into its 21st month, risks evolving into a protracted conflict, with the severe human cost being painful to fathom," Head of the Monitoring Mission Danielle Bell said.

HRMMU said the figure of 10,000 represents civilian deaths verified according to its methodology but cautioned that the actual figure may be significantly higher given the challenges and time required for verification.

According to the HRMMU, on November 15, a rocket hit a four-story residential building in the town of Selydove, Donetsk region, in Ukrainian-controlled territory, killing four civilians, raising the total death toll to more than 10,000. The deaths mentioned above include a family forced to relocate early in the war and an 85-year-old woman.

It is noted that in the last three months – from August to October, the vast majority of confirmed civilian deaths and injuries, which accounted for 86% of the total, occurred in territory controlled by the Ukrainian government. Most incidents resulted from the use of wide-area explosive weapons, such as artillery shells, cluster munitions, rockets and loitering munitions.

HRMMU monitoring shows that a significant number of civilian deaths and injuries occur far from the front line, mainly due to the use of long-range missiles and loitering munitions by the Russian armed forces to strike targets in populated areas throughout the country.

"Nearly half of civilian casualties in the last three months have occurred far away from the frontlines. As a result, no place in Ukraine is completely safe," Bell said.