Related Rule
Russian Federation
Practice Relating to Rule 14. Proportionality in Attack
The Russian Federation’s Regulations on the Application of IHL (2001) states:
The prohibited methods of warfare include … launching indiscriminate attacks including attacks against objects (targets) which may cause losses among the civilian population and damage to civilian objects which would be excessive in relation to the anticipated military advantage. 
Russian Federation, Regulations on the Application of International Humanitarian Law by the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation, Moscow, 8 August 2001, § 7; see also § 26.
The Regulations further states: “Indiscriminate attacks are … attacks which would result in violation of the principle of proportionality.” 
Russian Federation, Regulations on the Application of International Humanitarian Law by the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation, Moscow, 8 August 2001, § 54.
The Russian Federation’s Combat Manual (2005) states that “causing severe suffering or damage, which is excessive for the achievement of a military objective is prohibited”. 
Russian Federation, Combat Manual on the Preparation and Conducting of Combined-Arms Battles (Boevoi ustav po podgotovke i vedeniu obshevoiskovogo boya), Part 3, Platoon, Subdivision, Tank, endorsed by Order of the Commander-in-Chief of the Ground Forces No. 19, 24 February 2005, § 24.
The Report on the Practice of the Russian Federation considers the principle of proportionality the “weakest point of IHL” because
IHL itself does not clearly enough define the criteria of respecting the balance between the requirements of humanism and military necessity. This issue is not treated in any of the available documents. It remains the exclusive domain of commanders at the helm of military operations … Armed conflicts on the territory of the former USSR demonstrate that conflicting parties do not observe in their acts the limitations set forth in IHL. We are sorry to say that we do not know of any occurrence when a party to a conflict complained of the non-respect of the principle of proportionality by the parties. In all probability, this principle is in reality opposed by a practice based on the assumption that the aim to gain military superiority over the enemy can justify any means of warfare, which, in fact, often means the violation of the principle of proportionality. In this connection, we can point out that the large-scale military operations of the federal troops in Chechnya were at the beginning contrary to the principle of proportionality. In the armed forces of the CIS countries there are neither provisions defining the terms of the respect of the principle of proportionality nor provisions envisaging prosecution of individuals who violate this principle. 
Report on the Practice of the Russian Federation, 1997, Chapter 1.5.
In 2008, in a statement before the UN Security Council during a meeting on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the permanent representative of the Russian Federation stated: “We vigorously condemn both deliberate attacks on civilians and their deaths resulting from … [the] excessive use of force, which is a violation of international humanitarian law.” 
Russian Federation, Statement by the permanent representative of the Russian Federation before the UN Security Council during a meeting on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, 27 May 2008.
In 2009, in a statement before the UN Security Council during a meeting on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the permanent representative of the Russian Federation stated: “We strongly condemn deliberate attacks on and the killing of civilians through the … disproportionate use of force, which is a gross violation of international humanitarian law.” 
Russian Federation, Statement by the permanent representative of the Russian Federation before the UN Security Council during a meeting on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, 14 January 2009.
In 2010, in a statement before the UN Security Council during a meeting on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the permanent representative of the Russian Federation stated: “We resolutely condemn both wilful attacks against civilians and civilian loss of life as a result of … disproportionate use of force, which constitute serious violations of international humanitarian law.” 
Russian Federation, Statement by the permanent representative of the Russian Federation before the UN Security Council during a meeting on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, 7 July 2010.
In 2011, during the UN Security Council’s consideration of the report by the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court on the situation in Libya, the permanent representative of the Russian Federation stated:
We are deeply alarmed by the growing number of civilian casualties and the destruction of civilian facilities as a result of the actions by opposing Libyan parties, in particular as a result of the use of indiscriminate weapons.
Unfortunately, it must be noted that actions by the NATO-led coalition forces are also resulting in civilian casualties, as was seen in particular during recent bombings in Tripoli. We emphasize once again that any use of force by the coalition in Libya should be carried out in strict compliance with resolution 1973 (2011). Any act going beyond the mandate established by that resolution in any way or any disproportionate use of force is unacceptable.
We support the efforts by the International Criminal Court to carry out a fair and impartial investigation into the actions of all parties to the conflict in Libya and to bring to justice individuals involved in possible crimes against humanity and serious violations of international humanitarian law in Libya. 
Russian Federation, Statement by the permanent representative of the Russian Federation before the UN Security Council during the consideration of the report by the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court on the situation in Libya, 4 May 2011, p. 9.
In 2011, in a statement before the UN Security Council during a meeting on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the permanent representative of the Russian Federation stated: “We resolutely condemn … civilian deaths resulting from … disproportionate use of force, which is a flagrant violation of international humanitarian law.” 
Russian Federation, Statement by the permanent representative of the Russian Federation before the UN Security Council during a meeting on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, 10 May 2011, p. 9.
In 2011, in a statement before the UN Security Council during a meeting on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, the permanent representative of the Russian Federation stated: “We vigorously condemn … [the] demise [of civilians] as [a] result of the … disproportionate use of force, which is a gross violation of international humanitarian law.” 
Russian Federation, Statement by the permanent representative of the Russian Federation before the UN Security Council during a meeting on the protection of civilians in armed conflict, 9 November 2011, p. 23.
In 2012, in a statement before the UN Security Council during an open debate on children and armed conflict, the deputy permanent representative of the Russian Federation stated: “We … firmly condemn intentional attacks against civilians, including children, as well as … disproportionate … use of force that produces the same result.” 
Russian Federation, Statement by the deputy permanent representative of the Russian Federation before the UN Security Council during an open debate on children and armed conflict, 19 September 2012, p. 15.
In 2012, in a statement before the UN Security Council during a meeting on women and peace and security, the deputy permanent representative of the Russian Federation stated:
[W]e believe that equal attention should be paid to all categories of violence, including instances of killing and wounding women and children as a result of the … excessive use of force. …
The international community is expecting results in the investigation of the cases of deaths of the civilian population, including women and children, as a result of the NATO operations in Libya. … We are … seriously concerned by statistics concerning the so-called collateral damage as a result of the use of new types of weapons, such as drones. 
Russian Federation, Statement by the deputy permanent representative of the Russian Federation before the UN Security Council during a meeting on women and peace and security, 30 November 2012, pp. 14–15.