Ukraine: Amidst intensified military offensive, Ban condemns violence against civilians
7 July 2014
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today strongly condemned the “continued, unlawful” acts of armed fighters in Ukraine after
reports that they are regrouping in eastern provinces, and urged Ukrainian authorities to exercise maximum restraint and
According to media reports, armed groups have regrouped in Donetsk and Lugansk, from which more and more residents have
fled and others are trapped in zones of heavy fighting.
On 30 June, an extended ceasefire that Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko had put in place ended, resulting in
Ukrainian forces to engage in what Mr. Ban termed “intensified military activity.”
Mr. Ban’s spokesperson said the UN chief also underscored the importance of a “renewed and lasting cease-fire upheld by
all parties” and a political solution to the ongoing crisis.
“The continuation of a political and diplomatic process towards a definitive cessation of violence and a peaceful
resolution of the crisis is critical,” he said.
Navi Pillay, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, last week warned against “utterly reprehensible” incitement to
violence targeting women and underage girls, and destruction of civilian infrastructure.
She said that in the past week, her team had received numerous alarming reports of deaths in the Luhansk and Donetsk
regions, including the killing of a five-year-old girl, due to the intensified security operations.
Ms. Pillay said she was particularly disturbed by a message on the website of one leader of the self-proclaimed “Donetsk
People’s Republic,” stating that underage children and women are legitimate targets and that the goal is to ‘immerse
them in horror.’