Ukraine used cluster munitions — which many countries have banned — to force Russian troops out of a village, report says

Ukraine used cluster munitions — which many countries have banned — to force Russian troops out of a village, report says
A Ukrainian military office picks up a Russian cluster bomb near the village of Motyzhyn, Ukraine, on April 10, 2022.REUTERS/Mykola Tymchenko
  • Ukraine fired a cluster munition at Russian troops in March, The New York Times reported.
  • More than 100 countries banned cluster bombs in 2010, but Russia and Ukraine have not.

Ukraine fired cluster munition rockets, which have been banned in more than 100 countries under an international treaty, to drive Russian troops out of a village last month, The New York Times reported.

Ukrainian forces retook the villager of Husarivka, a rural hamlet located 60 miles south of the city of Kharkiv, on March 26, shortly after it was seized by invading Russian forces.

The Times said its reporters identified a 220-millimeter Uragan artillery rocket that had been fired at Russian troops by Ukrainian forces on either March 6 or March 7.

The Uragan is a cluster munition. Cluster bombs were banned by more than 100 countries as part of the 2010 Convention on Cluster Munitions. However, Russia, Ukraine, and the US were among the countries that didn't sign the agreement.

Cluster bombs are a type of rocket that break apart into smaller bombs after it has been fired to cover as wide an impact area as possible. Arms campaigners and rights groups say that because of its indiscriminate design, the rockets place civilians in danger.


Ukraine's armed forces did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Insider.

No one died in the cluster strike, The Times said, but noted that two people were killed by Ukrainian shelling during the occupation of the village.

Russia has been repeatedly accused of using cluster munitions throughout its invasion of Ukraine, but this is the first time that Ukrainian forces have been accused of doing so during this conflict.

Ukrainian forces used cluster munitions in 2015 during clashes with Russian-backed separatists in the pro-Kremlin Donbas region of Ukraine.

In a video address Monday, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Russia had begun its assault on the eastern Donbas region, which was largely controlled by pro-Kremlin separatist factions before Russia invaded Ukraine.


In recent weeks, Russia has repositioned its forces away from Kyiv and the north of Ukraine after its invasion stalled, and has begun a targeted assault on the Donbas.

However, several residents of Husarivka, which is further away from the eastern border, told The Times that Russian forces have continued to shell the village since being beaten back.

Only 400 of the the village's pre-war population of 1,000 had remained after Russia invaded, The Times reported.