Russia displays Western shells used by Ukraine to attack civilians
A senior Russian diplomat at the UN has shown fragments of Western-supplied shells and missiles that he claimed Ukraine used to attack civilians in Donbass and other Russian regions.
Speaking at a regular Security Council briefing concerning Ukraine on Friday, Russia’s deputy ambassador to the UN, Dmitry Polyansky, described the ordnance pieces as “physical evidence of how Western-supplied weapons are being actively used by Ukrainians to attack civilian infrastructure.”
He showcased what he said was debris from a US-made HIMARS missile that hit a regional administration building in Russia’s Kherson region last September, killing three people and injuring several others.
Polyansky went on to present a much larger fragment which he claimed was part of a Storm Shadow long-range missile with “a discernible inscription ‘Made in France’.” He said it had been used by Kiev in June to strike a bridge linking the northern part of the Crimean peninsula with the mainland. This link, he added, was crucial for transporting food and other vital supplies. Storm Shadow missiles were supplied to Ukraine by the UK.
He also showed what was allegedly a piece of a HIMARS missile that killed one civilian and wounded 11 others in a Ukrainian shelling of Donetsk in July. Another fragment of the US-made munition the diplomat displayed was said to have come from the shelling of Makeyevka, a town near Donetsk.
“Look at these fragments and imagine them being scattered around at a huge speed,” he said, addressing his British colleagues in particular. “Look here. You want people to keep silent about this,” he added.
Polyansky also stated that while Ukraine has been targeting civilians in Donbass since 2014, when large-scale hostilities erupted in the region following a Western-backed coup in Kiev, “the ‘civilized Western world’ has [long] been hiding behind a handy paradigm” that civilians there “had shelled themselves.”
According to the data provided by the Joint Center for Control and Coordination (JCCC) in the Donetsk People’s Republic, more than 4,700 civilians, including 139 children, have been killed in the region since February 2022. According to the now-defunct JCCC in the Lugansk People’s Republic, Ukrainian attacks claimed the lives of 192 people between February 2022 and February 2023.