U.S. formally accuses Russia of war crimes in Ukraine

Antony Blinken
(Image credit: Alex Wong/Getty Images)

The United States has officially accused Russian forces of committing war crimes in Ukraine, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement Wednesday.

"Today, I can announce that, based on information currently available, the U.S. government assesses that members of Russia's forces have committed war crimes in Ukraine," the statement read.

According to CNN, President Biden and Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman previously said that, in their personal opinions, Russia was committing war crimes.

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Blinken cited "numerous credible reports of indiscriminate attacks and attacks deliberately targeting civilians." He also referred specifically to strikes on "the Mariupol maternity hospital" and on "a Mariupol theater, clearly marked with the word 'дети' — Russian for 'children'"

Blinken said the U.S. "will continue to track reports of war crimes and will share information we gather with allies, partners, and international institutions and organizations."

Russian forces reportedly used similarly brutal tactics during previous conflicts in Chechnya and Syria. "Those who ordered and carried out unlawful attacks should be tried for war crimes," Human Rights Watch said of Russian airstrikes against Aleppo.

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