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Military: Russian troops used chemical munitions some 60 times in past week on Zaporizhzhia front

Ukrainian military official reported a concerning rise in chemical attacks by Russian forces in Zaporizhzhia Oblast, a serious breach of international law.
An RG-VO gas grenade
An RG-VO gas grenade. Credit: General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine
Military: Russian troops used chemical munitions some 60 times in past week on Zaporizhzhia front

In a concerning development from the Zaporizhzhia front, Ukrainian military officials report an increase in the use of chemical munitions by Russian troops. Dmytro Lykhovii, spokesperson for the Tavria Operational Strategic Grouping of Forces, revealed during a national telethon on 11 March that approximately 60 instances of chemical munitions deployment were recorded against Ukrainian defenders’ positions in just the past week.

The use of chemical weapons is a serious war crime and is prohibited by several international conventions to which Russia is still a signatory.

Regarding the Zaporizhzhia direction, particularly this section of the front, I can say that there is information that is concerning — Russians are increasingly using munitions with poisonous substances. Throughout the last week, from Monday to Sunday, there were about 60 drops of grenades with a poisonous substance with a suffocating and tear-producing effect, mostly this is chloropicrin or something similar. Just on Sunday, there were nine such drops,” Lykhovii said.

The Ukrainian military is taking necessary precautions to protect its personnel, including the use of protective gear and countermeasures against enemy drones involved in these attacks.

This is evidence that when the enemy cannot achieve its objectives in the usual way, with regular artillery, and drones, they resort to ‘weapons of last hope’ — chemical, poisonous substances when they simply want to smoke out our military from the trenches in this way,” Lykhovii added.

Russian troops have started to deploy a new type of special RG-Vo gas grenades containing an irritant agent against Ukrainian soldiers, Captain Andrii Rudyk, a representative of the Center for Research of Trophy and Advanced Weapons and Military Equipment of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, reported in January.

Previously, the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine reported that there were recorded 626 cases of Russian invaders using munitions containing toxic chemicals since the start of Russia’s full-scale war against Ukraine.

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