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Russian soldiers who executed Ukrainian POWs near Robotyne identified, military intelligence says

by Martin Fornusek and The Kyiv Independent news desk June 19, 2024 4:16 PM 2 min read
Illustrative purposes only: Russian soldiers patrol a street in occupied Melitopol on May 1, 2022. (Getty Images)
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Ukraine's military intelligence agency (HUR) said on June 19 that it had identified Russian soldiers who executed Ukrainian prisoners of war (POW) near Zaporizhzhia Oblast's Robotyne last month.

A video taken in the second half of May captured Russian troops executing four surrendering Ukrainian soldiers near Robotyne, a front-line village in the southern Zaporizhzhia Oblast.

The Ukrainian soldiers were made to lie down on their faces, after which they were shot in the back, the video shows. Ukraine's military intelligence stressed that this act constitutes a war crime.

This comes as yet another evidence of Russian war crimes committed against Ukrainian prisoners, both military and civilian, throughout the full-scale war.

The perpetrators were identified as soldiers of the 70th Motorized Rifle Regiment of the 42 Motorized Rifle Division of the 58th Army, the intelligence agency said. The regiment's usual station is the town of Shali in Chechnya.

The names of the alleged perpetrators are Captain Dmitry Nagornyi, Senior Lieutenant Temirlan Abutalimov, Lieutenant Zaur Bekov, and Senior Lieutenant Yusup Imagazaliev.

The intelligence agency also identified the commander of the regiment at the time of the execution as Lieutenant Colonel Yuri Abayev.

"These specific Russian war criminals may also be involved in the murder of several more Ukrainian prisoners of war later in May 2024," the agency said, saying they possess intercepted radio conversation as evidence.

As of March 2024, Ukraine's Prosecutor General's Office collected pretrial information on over 128,000 victims of war crimes. The prosecutors said they are investigating cases of at least 54 Ukrainian POWs being executed by Russia.

Prosecutor General Andrii Kostin said on June 18 that Russian commanders had given orders "not to capture Ukrainian servicemen, but instead to kill them with inhuman cruelty." He made the statement after revealing footage of a Ukrainian soldier beheaded by Russian troops.

Russian troops beheaded Ukrainian soldier in Donetsk Oblast, Kyiv claims
In a post on social media, Ukraine’s Prosecutor General Andriy Kostin said his office has received information that Russian commanders had given orders “not to capture Ukrainian servicemen, but instead to kill them with inhuman cruelty - by beheading.”

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