WHO gathers evidence for possible war crimes investigation against Russia

KYIV, May 7 (Reuters) – The World Wellness Group (WHO) is accumulating proof for a possible war crimes investigation into assaults it says it has documented by Russia on health care amenities in Ukraine, it claimed in Kyiv on Saturday.

WHO Emergencies Director Mike Ryan, on an unannounced stop by collectively with WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, instructed a information convention it was the express obligation of warring functions to stay clear of attacking wellness facilities, yet the WHO experienced previously documented 200 assaults on hospitals and clinics in the country.

“Intentional assaults on health care facilities are a breach of worldwide humanitarian legislation and as these types of – primarily based on investigation and attribution of the attack – signify war crimes in any condition,” Ryan reported.

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“We keep on to doc and bear witness to these attacks … and we have faith in that the U.N. process and the Intercontinental Felony Court docket and other individuals will choose the required investigations in buy to assess the felony intent driving these attacks.”

Russia has denied former accusations by Ukraine and Western nations of feasible war crimes and has also denied targeting civilians in the war.

Ryan said the 200 instances did not depict the totality of assaults on Ukrainian healthcare facilities, only all those the WHO experienced verified. Kyiv has said there have been close to 400 this kind of attacks considering that Russia invaded Ukraine on Feb. 24.

President Volodymyr Zelenskiy reported on Thursday that Russian troops experienced wrecked or weakened nearly 400 healthcare institutions in Ukraine. read through more

Tedros explained to the very same information convention: “My information to all the people of Ukraine is this: ‘WHO stands by you’ … We go on to get in touch with on the Russian Federation to cease this war.”

WHO member states will on Tuesday look at a resolution from Russia that includes the achievable closure of a major regional office in Moscow, a doc obtained by Reuters showed very last Thursday.

The draft resolution stops limited of harsher sanctions this sort of as suspending Russia from the U.N. global wellness agency’s board, as well as a temporary freeze of its voting rights, 3 diplomatic and political sources claimed.

The draft, organized largely by EU diplomats and submitted to the WHO’s regional office environment for Europe this week, follows a request by Ukraine signed by at minimum 38 other customers together with Turkey, France and Germany.

Moscow calls its actions since Feb. 24 a “particular military services procedure” to disarm Ukraine and rid it of what it phone calls anti-Russian nationalism fomented by the West. Ukraine and the West say Russia launched an unprovoked war of aggression.

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Crafting by Kevin Liffey Modifying by Andrew Cawthorne and David Holmes

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