Kremlin-backed news channel reports Russia used tear gas grenades on Ukrainian troops
In a Tuesday segment on the ongoing fighting in Spirne, a village in Ukraine’s Donetsk region, reporters from Russia’s state-run news station Channel One reported that Russian soldiers have been using grenades containing a type of tear gas called Cheremukha against Ukrainian soldiers.
In the broadcast, which is still available to watch on the channel’s website, a correspondent says fighters from Russia’s 88th Brigade use the grenades to “smoke out” Ukrainians from their entrenchments. A soldier identified in the video as the battalion’s commander adds that the Ukrainian troops have tried to use gas masks to resist the attacks but that the masks haven’t helped.
The independent outlet iStories has determined that the commander interviewed in the segment is a man named Vladislav Vodolazsky who is originally from the city of Lysychansk in Ukraine’s Donetsk region. His name is listed on Myrotvorets, a Ukrainian site that contains information about people accused of colluding with Russia or participating in separatist movements.
The use of chemical weapons in war is banned under the 1993 Chemical Weapons Convention. Paragraph five of Section I of the article reads: “Each State Party undertakes not to use riot control agents as a method of warfare.” Russia is a party to the convention.
The Russian Interior Ministry’s arsenal includes various types of Cheremukha grenades, which contain the chemical warfare agent chloroacetophenone. The substance can cause a burning sensation in the eyes, corneal clouding, and vision impairment, as well as shortness of breath, coughing, and burns on the skin.
In late March, the pro-Kremlin Telegram channel Russian Spring War Correspondents reported that the Russian army had used “chemical grenades” near the city of Kreminna in the Luhansk region. Ukraine has also accused Russia of the illegal practice.