Of 38 released civilians (34 men, 4 women) interviewed by OHCHR in the mentioned period, 33 individuals reported having various forms of torture or ill-treatment inflicted on them while in detention, in order to force them to confess to having cooperated with the Ukrainian armed forces, to force them to cooperate with Russian armed forces or affiliated armed groups, or simply to intimidate them
ZMINA talked to people, volunteers, and drivers who crossed the checkpoints in Vasylivka. In a few months, they turned into a separate world, subject to the changing mood of the occupiers – lawlessness reigns here, people have to spend nights by the road in tents and cars or neighboring villages, undergo humiliating inspections, and do not have access to healthcare. The physically and psychologically exhausting wait for departure has already claimed the lives of more than ten people.
The man could not be found for a long time. His relatives believed in a miracle, but the DNA analysis of the body found later confirmed that Yevhen had been killed between the villages of Kolychivka and Lukashivka. The Russian military struck the bus he was traveling in with an anti-tank guided missile. Iryna, the wife of the murdered man, told ZMINA about the weeks spent hoping that her husband had survived, searching for him, and the circumstances of the Russian war crime.
Yevhen Kostomanov, 59, lived and worked in Mariupol all his life. In March, the man lost his daughter – she was killed as a Russian aerial bomb hit their house – but he managed to survive. Yevhen told ZMINA about the month spent in Mariupol and how he, his wife, and seven-year-old grandson fled the city literally on foot.
At the end of June, a ZMINA journalist visited Shestovytsia together with the Educational Human Rights House Chernihiv experts who document the Russian war crimes of the Russians within Ukraine 5 AM Coalition. The article tells about life in the village during the occupation.
Viktoria Klimtsova, 47, and her elderly mother lived in Bucha until it was liberated from the occupiers. However, at the beginning of April, they left for Cherkasy region as Viktoria had no reason to stay any longer. On March 28, her husband Oleh, who had refused to evacuate not wanting to give an inch of his native land to the Russians, was shot by the Russian military. The woman told ZMINA how her family, together with other residents of a five-story building on Sklozavodska Street, survived the occupation, how they supported the elderly and abandoned animals, and how the Russians massively murdered civilians, including her husband, in the last days of the occupation.
The Office of the Prosecutor General (OPG) is constantly updating the statistics of documented violations, as well as bringing charges to the Russian military and government authorities in absentia. However, it is the cases of detained prisoners of war (POW) that have the best prospects in the context of bringing the perpetrators to justice at the domesting level.
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