December 2019

From 1 to 31 December 2019, Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) recorded three conflict-related civilian casualties, a 25 per cent decrease compared with November 2019. A man was killed by SALW[2] fire in Government-controlled part of Donetsk region; a man was injured by light weapons fire in territory controlled by the self-proclaimed ‘Donetsk people’s republic’; and a man was injured as a result of ERW handling[3] in Government-controlled part of Donetsk region.

November 2019

From 1 to 30 November 2019, OHCHR recorded four conflict-related civilian casualties, a 66.7 per cent decrease compared with October 2019. Three men were injured by shelling and SALW fire in territory controlled by the self-proclaimed ‘Donetsk people’s republic’, and a woman was injured by small arms fire in Government-controlled part of Donetsk region.

October 2019

From 1 to 31 October 2019, OHCHR recorded 12 conflict-related civilian casualties, a 42.9 percent decrease compared with September 2019. Three man and a woman were injured by shelling and SALW fire in territory controlled by the self-proclaimed ‘Donetsk people’s republic’. A man and a woman were killed, and three men, two women and a boy were injured as a result of mine-related incidents[4] and ERW handling: two killed in Government-controlled territory; four injured in territory controlled by the self-proclaimed ‘Donetsk people’s republic’ and two injured in territory controlled by the self-proclaimed ‘Luhansk people’s republic’.

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From 1 January to 31 December 2019, OHCHR recorded 167 conflict-related civilian casualties: 27 killed and 140 injured. This is a 40.6 per decrease compared with 2018 (55 killed and 226 injured) and the lowest annual civilian casualty figures for the entire conflict period.

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Shelling and SALW fire

From 1 January to 31 December 2019, OHCHR recorded 105 civilian casualties caused by shelling and SALW fire (eight killed and 97 injured), a 32.7 per cent decrease compared with 2018 (21 killed and 136 inured). Of them: 85 (five killed and 80 injured; 80.6 per cent) were recorded in territory controlled by the self-proclaimed ‘Donetsk people’s republic’ and the self-proclaimed ‘Luhansk people’s republic’, 18 (three killed and 15 injured; 17.1 per cent) – in Government-controlled territory, and two injured – in ‘no man’s land’.[1]

Mine-related incidents and ERW handling

From 1 January to 31 December 2019, OHCHR recorded 59 civilian casualties (17 killed and 42 injured) resulting from mine-related incidents and ERW handling. This is a 52.4 per cent decrease compared with 2018 (36 killed and 88 injured).

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Civilian casualties during entire conflict period

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During the entire conflict period, from 14 April 2014 to 31 December 2019, OHCHR recorded in total 3,049 conflict-related civilian deaths (1,809 men, 1,056 women, 98 boys, 49 girls and 37 adults whose sex is unknown). Taking into account 298 deaths on board of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 on 17 July 2014, the total death toll of the conflict on civilians has reached at least 3,347. The number of injured civilians is estimated to exceed 7,000

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[1] OHCHR documents civilian casualties by consulting a broad range of sources and types of information, which are evaluated for credibility and reliability. This update is based on information that UN Human Rights Monitoring Mission in Ukraine (HRMMU) collected through interviews with victims and their relatives; witnesses; analysis of corroborating material confidentially shared with HRMMU; official records; open-source documents, photo and video materials; forensic records and reports; criminal investigation materials; court documents; public reports of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine; reports by international and national non-governmental organizations; public reports by law enforcement and military actors; data from medical facilities and local authorities; and other relevant and reliable materials. In some instances, corroboration may take weeks or months before conclusions can be drawn. This may mean that conclusions on civilian casualties may be revised as more information becomes available. Numbers may change as new information emerges over time.

[2] Small arms and light weapons.

[3] Victims of ERW handling manipulate with an ERW for a certain period of time and take additional efforts to make it detonate (for instance, by trying to dismantle it), or were near those, who manipulated an ERW.

[4] Incidents in which civilians were killed or injured by mines (antipersonnel or anti-vehicle) or explosive devices triggered in the same way, such as booby traps, or by ERW (explosive remnants of war) that are inadvertently detonated by unsuspecting civilians.

In 2018, civilian casualties caused by shelling and SALW fire distributed as follows: 123 (78.3 per cent) were recorded in territory controlled by the self-proclaimed ‘Donetsk people’s republic’ and the self-proclaimed ‘Luhansk people’s republic’, 27 (17.2 per cent) – in Government-controlled territory, and seven – in ‘no man’s land’.