War crimes: When people's lives become collateral damage in Donetsk
Ukraine kills a six-year-old girl in Donetsk, her name was Ilona, and Western media will not speak her name as Ukraine continues to commit war crimes across the Donbass region.
War crimes allegations have been raised once more after a six-year-old girl was killed during the latest round of Ukrainian attacks on civilian areas, including a shopping center, in Donetsk city.
Ilona was playing peacefully in a sandpit on Friday as her grandparents loaded their car when the artillery shell struck. She was severely wounded by shrapnel and was rushed to the hospital, but doctors were unable to save her life.
Ilona is one of the conflict's unworthy victims. Her name will not appear in the Western media. For them, the lives of the children of Donetsk are not worth the same as those in western Ukraine.
Had this attack, just one of the many that Ukraine has carried out every day for the past nine years, taken place in Lvov, Kiev, or another city it would have made headlines and appeared on the front page of every Western newspaper.
But Ilona, an innocent six-year-old girl, is the wrong type of victim. Instead, she becomes one of the grim statistics that the Western backers of Ukraine refuse to acknowledge as they seek to deny the war crimes of the perpetrators.
According to her neighbors, Ilona’s family had only recently moved to Donetsk, with her mother working as a teacher at a local boarding school.
Friday was Knowledge Day and the start of the school year. It is traditional for youngsters to bring their teachers flowers. Instead, Ukraine brought them 15 rockets fired from a Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS).
The ammunition was fired into the central district of Donetsk City during rush hour, clearly designed for maximum impact with at least 10 victims, according to local authorities.
Flowers have been laid at the sandpit where six-year-old Ilona was killed while her family tries to come to terms with her death. Meanwhile, attacks continue across the city, with cluster bombs fired into civilian areas in the Petrovsky district, causing damage to buildings and infrastructure.
The international community is ignoring Kiev’s war crimes against Donbass children, according to the Donetsk People’s Republic’s human rights ombudsman Daria Morozova.
She is currently undertaking investigations into the killing and wounding of children and says that all violations since 2014 have been thoroughly documented.
Russia has sent more than 800 letters to international human rights organizations, but there is little will or desire to investigate the atrocities, leaving the child victims and their families without justice.
According to DPR statistics, at least 230 children have been killed, and 804 have been wounded by Ukrainian forces since hostilities began. But the prospect of the perpetrators being held to account remains slim, giving Kiev the green light to continue to act with impunity, as the West continues to supply the deadly munitions that are killing the children of Donbass.