The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) Thursday confirmed that 802 civilian casualties took place in Ukraine in the first week of conflict. Of those 802 casualties, 249 were killed and 553 injured. This included men, women and children.
The OHCHR was established by the UN General Assembly in 1993 with a mission of addressing and bringing attention to human rights violations. The OHCHR has documented civilian casualties in Ukraine since the 2014 conflict began in the Donbas region. Civilian casualty reports are collected by UN officials through witness and close relative interviews and records searches from a variety of sources. All of these sources are heavily vetted by the OHCHR to ensure accuracy.
The casualty numbers reported Thursday were collected from 4 AM February 24 through midnight March 2. According to the OHCHR report, most casualties resulted from explosive weapons with a wide impact area. In the report, the OHCHR condemned the use of these explosive weapons in densely populated areas, as their impacts are significant.
The report details how 337 casualties were recorded in the Donetsk and Luhansk region, with another 465 casualties recorded in other regions still under Ukraine government control. This includes city of Kyiv and Cherkasy, Chernihiv, Kharkiv, Kherson, Kyiv, Odesa, Sumy, Zaporizhzhia, and Zhytomyr regions.
OHCHR believes the casualties recorded in the Ukraine government-controlled regions may be considerably higher due to “intensive hostilities.” Ukraine has seen increasingly brutal Russian attacks over the past few days, including airstrikes and artillery fire.
More than one million Ukrainians have left the country, seeking refuge in neighboring countries. The OHCHR continues to track civilian casualties for those who remain in the country.