Donetsk, May 22 - DAN. The Poroshenko regime’s Donbass policy caused civilian fatalities on a scale unheard of since World War II, and Kiev is not going to stop, DPR head Alexander Zakharchenko said at a session of the Ukrainian People's Tribunal on Tuesday.

“Any war is essentially evil. You cannot stay indifferent. It might sound cynical but the unfolding scenario involves the deaths of children, women and old people. What is now happening is the most terrible tragedy which our land has not experienced since the Great Patriotic War,” said Zakharchenko who took the stand at the UPT hearing as witness.

The Donbass war is the genocide of the regional population committed by Kiev. It is evident not only from engagements against civilians but also from financial, economic and transport blockades and denial of means of subsistence to people.

“Pensions have been decreasing consistently since 2014 and then Ukrainian authorities stopped paying them altogether. As of today, Ukraine is not making any welfare payments in the region. All social benefits available in the Donetsk People’s Republic are provided with DPR resources,” Zakharchenko said. “We introduced external control at metallurgical companies whose workforce together with members of their families number 150,000 to 180,000; they want to leave these people without a living and the opportunities to earn wages, clothe themselves and educate their children.”

Separately, Zakharchenko addessed the Donbass reintegration law. This document is Ukrainian authorities’ attempt to find an excuse for the mass death of civilians. “As of today, the contact line situation is worsening, judging by the number of strikes and the attempts to probe our defence positions; I believe Ukraine is preparing for a new offensive,” he said.

According to the latest information provided by DPR ombudswoman Darya Morozova, 4,626 people have died in shelling by Ukrainian forces in the areas not controlled by Kiev authorities since the beginning of the conflict.

The UPT brought charges against eight people including Ukrainian president Petr Poroshenko, Interior Minister Arsen Avakov, National Security and Defence Council Secretary Alexander Turchinov, Prime Minister Vladimir Groisman, Chief of the General Staff Viktor Muzhenko, Defence Minister Stepan Poltorak, parliament speaker Andrey Parubiy and former Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk.

The Ukrainian People’s Tribunal set up by Ukrainian activists living in Donetsk and Lugansk is reviewing cases in accordance with the Ukrainian legislation and norms of international law.*jk