At least six Ukrainian servicemen deployed to the Donbas war zone have suffered serious eye damage from unidentified optical radiation devices used by Kremlin-backed militants on several occasions since 2016.
The military believes that the soldiers were likely targeted with blinding laser devices, which Russia brought to Donbas in order to test this new advanced technology in battlefield conditions. If independently confirmed, the usage of such weapons can be qualified as a war crime, according to international law.
Since the war’s outbreak in 2014, there have been at least three such incidents recorded by the State Border Service and the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense.
On July 18, 2016, three Ukrainian border guards deployed to a forward checkpoint between the city of Maryinka just west of Russian-occupied Donetsk suffered severe eye injuries as they surveyed enemy territory in front of them through binoculars and monoculars.
According to the Border Service’s spokesperson, Oleh Slobodyan, the details of the incident leave little doubt that the Russian-backed militants used laser weaponry.
“Above all, the servicemen who were watching the location through monoculars had only one of their eyes injured, while the one using binoculars had both eyes burned,” Slobodyan commented shortly after the incident on Aug. 16, 2016. (end of excerpt)
Click here for the full story, on the Kyiv Post website.