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On Ukraine, UN Says UNclear if Army Just Defends Itself, Who Killed Journalists?

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, June 24 -- When UN official Ivan Simonovic briefed the Security Council on June 24, it was by video from UNDP in his native Croatia.

  He repeated the finding of his recent human rights report, on which he told Inner City Press that his team had no weapons expertise. He added, “since last week, in Slovyansk, there is no running water and residents are resorting to using wells. Around 90% of the town is now cut off from electricity.”

Simonovic praised the Security Council for condemning “the recent killing of two Russian journalists by mortar fire, which follows the killing of an Italian photojournalist and his Russian interpreter on 24 May.” Simonovic added, “While the perpetrators of these recent attacks are yet to be identified, it will be highly important to ensure accountability.”

Simonovic then announced that he would have to leave without answering any questions.

Before that, UN Department of Political Affairs official Tayé-Brook Zerihoun said, “Ukrainian forces also continued their 'security operation,' although it was unclear if they were merely defending themselves against attacks.” Call it the presumption of innocence.


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