Civilians from the both sides, in Gori and Tskhinvali, have been victims of indiscriminate attacks, the Human Rights Watch (HRW) said on August 14.
An attack on the main square in the Georgian town of Gori on August 12 killed and injured dozens of civilians, it said. And in Tskhinvali HRW researchers saw numerous apartment buildings and houses damaged by shelling.
“Some of them had been hit by rockets most likely fired from Grad launchers, weapons that should not be used in areas populated by civilians, as they cannot be directed at only military targets and are therefore inherently indiscriminate,” it said.
“Human Rights Watch expressed its deep concern over the apparently indiscriminate nature of the attacks that have taken such a toll on civilians.”
Anna Neistat of HRW, who was leading a team investigating the humanitarian damage in South Ossetia, told the Guardian that Russia’s claims that 2,000 Ossetians were killed were “exaggerated.”
“The figure of 2,000 people killed is very doubtful," she said. "Our findings so far do not in any way confirm the Russian statistics. On the contrary, they suggest the numbers are exaggerated.”