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NATO chief says Russia targeting fleeing civilians in Ukraine

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg speaks to the media prior to the start of a foreign ministers' meeting following Russia's invasion of Ukraine, at the Alliance's headquarters in Brussels, on March 4, 2022. (Oliver Doulirey/Pool/AFP)
NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg speaks to the media prior to the start of a foreign ministers' meeting following Russia's invasion of Ukraine, at the Alliance's headquarters in Brussels, on March 4, 2022. (Oliver Doulirey/Pool/AFP)

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg says Russia’s armed forces may be deliberately targeting civilians as they try to flee the military assault on Ukraine.

Stoltenberg says “there are very creditable reports of civilians coming under fire as they try to evacuate. Targeting civilians is a war crime, and it’s totally unacceptable.”

He tells reporters in Latvia that the humanitarian impact of the almost two-week long war “is devastating.”

“We need real humanitarian corridors that are fully respected,” he says.

Asked what NATO can do to help, Stoltenberg says: “We have a responsibility to ensure the conflict does not spread beyond Ukraine.” NATO is boosting its defenses to ensure that members near Russia and Ukraine are not next on Moscow’s target list.

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