The Department for investigating crimes connected with the use of prohibited means and methods of warfare of the Investigative Committee’s Head Office has discovered and documented conclusive evidence that the Ukraine’s Armed Forces used weapons of mass destruction, namely tactical operational missile complexes Tochka-U (Point-U) against civilians in 2014 and 2015.
The Tochka-U missile complex was developed in the 70s and was used by the Soviet Army since 1975. Its upgraded modification with up to 120 km range – RK 9K79-1 Tochka-U started to be supplied to the troops in 1989. A lot of those complexes remained in Ukraine after the Soviet Union collapsed and are still one of the most powerful weapons in the armory of the modern Ukrainian army. There is a wide range of ammunition for the complex of both conventional and special types – nuclear and chemical. The investigators have information that Ukrainian militaries have used rockets carrying shrapnel and cluster charges against civilians in Donbass. The explosive warhead lets out up to 14.5 thousand fragments scattering them around an area of 2-3 ha. A missile carrying a cluster charge can strike people and non-armored vehicles in an open area of between 3.5 and 7 ha ejecting up to 15.8 thousand pieces of shrapnel.
There is no doubt that such weapons can be classified as weapons of mass destruction having an extremely high destructive power over a large area. They are designed to kill a large number of humans and cause great damage across relatively large areas and aim to strike an unlimited number of people within a blast area. International treaties prohibit the use of weapons that do leave no chance of survival for both belligerents and civilians during armed clashes or armed conflicts. The use of such indiscriminate weapons incidentally leads to casualties and wounds among civilian population, as well as to excessive damage of civilian infrastructure. The Ukrainian army is in violation of Minsk protocols, the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War (Geneva, 1949) and its follow-up protocol II. The use of such weapons suggests that Kiev authorities intend to annihilate completely the population and infrastructure in southeastern Ukraine.
The investigators have documented the evidence that Ukrainian military servants used Tochka-U complexes to shell the settlements in Luhansk Region: the city of Luhansk, the settlements of Novosvetlovka and Ternovoye, Krasnodon District, the town of Rovenki, the settlement of Yubileiny in the city of Luhansk.
The Investigative Committee in close cooperation with operative services continues to identify all persons involved in the crimes against civilians in southeastern Ukraine independent of the time when they were committed.
Acting Head of Media Relations S.L. Petrenko