The European Union condemns the “serious violations and war crimes” committed by Russia in Ukraine, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said on Thursday.
“The European Union condemns in the strongest terms the Russian armed forces and their proxies who continue to target the civilian population and civilian infrastructure of Ukraine, as well as their headquarters in the city of Mariupol,” Borrell said in a statement. a statement.
Ukraine has accused Russia of bombing a theater in the eastern city of Mariupol where hundreds of people had taken refuge, despite a sign reading “children” in Russian – carved into the ground on either side of the building.
Mariupol City Hall said on Telegram that “about 30,000 people left in their transport”, adding that “80% of residential housing was destroyed”. He said he was “clarifying casualty information” from the theater bombing.
“Such deliberate attacks on civilians and civilian infrastructure are shameful, reprehensible and completely unacceptable. They constitute serious violations of international humanitarian law,” Borrell said.
Russia has no right under international law to use unilateral force against a third country and therefore “bears full responsibility for these acts of military aggression and all destruction and loss of life that they cause”, declared the head of European diplomacy.
“Perpetrators of these grave violations and war crimes, as well as responsible government officials and military leaders will be held accountable,” he pledged.
Earlier Thursday, Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov called on European lawmakers to recognize Russian President Vladimir Putin as a “war criminal” and urged the bloc to step up arms shipments to fight the forces of Moscow.
The request came after US President Joe Biden sparked Kremlin fury on Wednesday by branding the Russian leader a “war criminal” for his forces’ shelling of Ukrainian cities.
The International Criminal Court in The Hague has opened an investigation into possible war crimes in Ukraine.
Borrell also called on Russia on Thursday to establish “unimpeded humanitarian access to Ukraine.”
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