New CCTV Footage Shows How Russian Soldiers Executed Civilians in Ukraine

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KEY POINTS

  • Russian paratroopers executed several Ukrainian fighters captured in the occupied city of Bucha in early March.
  • The bodies of the victims were left in a courtyard for about a month
  • A former US ambassador said the killings could turn into “a strong case for war crimes prosecution”.

During their occupation of a Ukrainian city, Russian soldiers rounded up local prisoners and took them to an area where the prisoners were later found dead.

Several Russian paratroopers took a total of nine people at gunpoint to an office building at 144 Yablunska Street in Bucha on March 4. New York Times reported.

The captives, identified as eight Ukrainian fighters and a resident who gave them food, were forced out of the latter’s home before being forced to walk about 300 meters to the office that the Russians had converted into a makeshift base and field hospital. exit.

Russian soldiers then forced the inmates, including delivery driver Denys Rudenko, to the ground, showing videos taken by security camera and eyewitnesses at a nearby home.

As one of the videos ended here, eyewitnesses claimed that Russian troops shot one of the detainees, Vitaliy Karpenko, 28, just after the detainees were forced to kneel.

The Russians also shot and killed another man named Andriy Verbovyi after he was taken to the Russian makeshift base and interrogated.

According to Ivan Skyba, who survived the alleged executions, one of the men later told the Russians that he and the others were combatants, and as a result he was released. Ukrainian authorities are reportedly now investigating the released man for “treason.”

The 43-year-old claimed that Skyba and the remaining prisoners were then taken to the courtyard on the side of the office building, where the body of another dead man lay. The dead man Skyba saw was identified as 37-year-old Andriy Matviychuk, a missing fighter shot in the head, according to his death certificate.

An eyewitness living in front of the office building at 144 Yablunska Street said that Russian soldiers kept the prisoners out of sight before the gunshots were heard.

“I fell and pretended to be dead. I didn’t move and I couldn’t breathe. It was cold outside and you could see people’s breathing,” said Skyba, who was shot in the side.

Skyba allegedly remained on the ground as the Russians fired another volley at the still-moving wounded before fleeing after 15 minutes after he could no longer hear the soldiers’ voices.

The bodies, including Rudenko’s, were videotaped by a drone the next day, March 5. Two Russian soldiers stood guard beside them, according to The Times.

The bodies of the men killed in the parking lot and office building, along with six other victims, were left in the courtyard for about a month.

Remaining materials indicated that the building may have been occupied by the 104th and 234th Air Assault Regiments of the Russian Air Force.

The execution of captured Ukrainian fighters and their host “is the kind of event that could become a strong case for war crimes prosecution,” said Stephen Rapp, the former US ambassador to war crimes.

Commanders of soldiers who allegedly shot detainees could also be blamed if they became aware of the killings and did not take action to prevent or punish the actions, Rapp said.

Ukraine has identified more than 10,000 possible war crimes committed during the invasion of Russia. BBC I said.

The Ukrainian flag is seen next to new graves for people killed in a cemetery in the Bucha Kyiv region of Ukraine during the Russian invasion of Ukraine, April 28, 2022. Photograph: Reuters / ZOHRA BENSEMRA

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