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Fighting misinformation and supporting human rights advocacy in Ukraine

December 10, 2019

International Partnership for Human Rights (IPHR) collaborated with Truth Hounds, a Ukraine-based NGO, to collect information about the impact of shelling in Donetsk and Luhansk (Eastern Ukraine). Truth Hounds integrated eyeWitness technology into a multi-step model of data collection and verification that aimed to strengthen evidence and reduce opportunities for data manipulation. They used eyeWitness technology to corroborate information already collected, such as witness statements and data obtained from military sources.

Man wearing yellow hard hat is taking a photo of a shell crater on the ground using a mobile phone. There is a tape measure on the ground next to the crater.

© Anastasia Taylor-Lind

With the assistance of eyeWitness, the field documenters took 159 photographs of shell craters and property damage. This information helped confirm shelling sites in the Donbas region of Ukraine and was used to assess whether objects protected under international law—such as schools, hospitals, churches and civilian houses—had been targeted. In addition, the trusted metadata captured by the eyeWitness app was integrated into a visual map that accompanied a written report published in 2017, which was shared with the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).

This footage and other photographs captured in subsequent documentation missions have since been requested by international and domestic law enforcement bodies and investigators.