As Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine continues to exact a grievous toll almost a month in, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken released a statement on Wednesday alleging that Russia is guilty of war crimes.
“Today, I can announce that, based on information currently available, the U.S. government assesses that members of Russia’s forces have committed war crimes in Ukraine,” Blinken said before heading to an emergency NATO summit in Brussels. “We are committed to pursuing accountability using every tool available, including criminal prosecutions,” he added, saying that the U.S. would share information with allies and nongovernmental institutions investigating war crimes and crimes against humanity.
Blinken cited “credible reports of indiscriminate attacks and attacks deliberately targeting civilians, as well as other atrocities.”
In Mariupol, Russian forces bombed a maternity hospital last week, killing a young girl and two others. Multiple bombings of civilian shelters and schools have also been reported. Following an attack on a theater in which the word “children” had been written in Russian on the pavement outside, President Biden called Putin a “war criminal.” As of early this week, the United Nations confirmed that at least 925 civilians have been killed and another 1,496 injured since the invasion began.