Russia accused of using phosphorus bombs in Bakhmut
Ukraine has accused Russian troops of using phosphorus munitions on the besieged city of Bakhmut.
Drone footage released by the Ukrainian military shows what is reported to be white phosphorous raining down on the city.
“Bakhmut. Phosphorus munitions. Miserable ba*tards. The same situation was in Mariupol. When they can’t do anything, phosphorus munitions are fired,” Petro Andriushchenko, adviser to Mariupol mayor, posted on Telegram.
Not enough shells, but more than enough phosphorus.
Ruscists are shelling unoccupied areas of Bakhmut with incendiary ammunition.
They will burn in Hell.
📷 @SOF_UKR pic.twitter.com/7oqNTumJ34
— Defense of Ukraine (@DefenceU) May 5, 2023
Writing on Twitter, Ukraine’s defence ministry said the phosphorus attack targeted “unoccupied areas of Bakhmut with incendiary ammunition”.
Kyiv’s special forces command added that Moscow’s forces continued “to destroy the city”.
It is not clear when the attack took place. The footage shows a number of high-rise buildings engulfed in flames.
It is not the first time Russia has been accused of using chemical weapons.
Western intelligence analysts are reportedly examining claims Kremlin forces used such weapons on the besieged port city of Mariupol.
Experts were probing reports that three people were showing symptoms of chemical poisoning, including dizziness and breathing problems, after a drone dropped an unknown substance earlier this year.
White phosphorus ignites instantly when it comes into contact with oxygen, and its primary function in weaponry is to burn, fast and bright.
It is used in incendiary munitions by militaries around the world, including the United States, often to illuminate targets as part of tracer munitions at night.
White phosphorus is also used to create smokescreens during the day, as it puts off a huge amount of smoke when it burns.