Murder, deny, tell it’s staged: crimes against humanity by Russia in Ukraine

In the light of the recent downing of a Russian transport aircraft IL-76 used to carry surface-to-air defense missiles for S-300/400 air defense systems (which were modified to be used as surface-to-surface missiles, very inaccurate, always inflicting massive destruction of civilian infrastructure and victims among civilians), Russia’s officials’ claim that the aforementioned aircraft carried Ukrainian POWs, that were about to be exchanged for Russian POWs seems humiliating.

Russia’s reaction to this event bears a staggering resemblance to the Kremlin’s interpretation of its previous crimes against humanity, such as the Bucha massacre, Olenivka prison massacre, Izyum massacre, and many other Russian barbaric crimes against humanity in Ukraine.

The Bucha massacre

The Bucha massacre also known as the Bucha Genocide was the mass murder of Ukrainian civilians by the Russian Armed Forces during occupation of the town of Bucha as part of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

According to official information, 458 bodies have been recovered from the town, including 9 children under the age of 18; among the victims, 419 people were killed with weapons and 39 appeared to have died of causes related to the occupation.

Russians used basements of different buildings as torture chambers. Many bodies were found mutilated and burnt, and girls as young as fourteen had been raped by Russian soldiers. In intercepted conversations between Russian military, Russian soldiers referred to these operations involving hunting down people in lists, filtration, torture, and execution.

Naturally, as they always do, Russian authorities have denied responsibility and instead claimed that Ukraine had faked footages of the event or staged the killings itself as a false flag operation, and have claimed that the footage and photographs of dead bodies were a “staged performance”. These assertions by Russian authorities have been debunked as false by various groups and media organizations.

The Olenivka prison massacre

On 29 July 2022, Russia attacked a building housing Ukrainian prisoners of war in a Russian-controlled prison in Molodizhne near Olenivka, Donetsk Oblast. Only one building was destroyed, the one housing Ukrainian POWs, killing by various estimates from 53 to 62 Ukrainian prisoners of war (POWs) and leaving from 75 to 130 wounded. The prisoners were mainly soldiers from the Azovstal complex, the last Ukrainian stronghold in the siege of Mariupol.

Russian authorities officially denied its participation in the mass murder of Ukrainian POWs, blaming, as always, the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the killing of its own soldiers.

The Izyum massacre

On 15 September 2022, several mass graves, including one site containing at least 440 bodies, were found in woods near the Ukrainian city of Izyum after it had been recaptured by Ukrainian forces during the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The graves contained bodies of people killed by Russian forces. By various estimates, more than 1,000 people had been killed by the Russian Army during the occupation of Izyum.

More than 436 bodies were discovered in one of the sites including 414 bodies of civilians (215 men, 194 women, 5 children) and 22 servicemen. Most of the dead showed signs of violent death, and 30 presented traces of torture and collective execution, some victims had ropes tied around their necks, bound hands, broken limbs, and genital amputation; others might have died from shelling and a lack of access to healthcare caused by the occupation by the Russian Army.

On 26 September, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said that two more mass graves had been found “with hundreds of people”.

And now, recalling all previous mass-murder of Ukrainians by the Russian military, can anyone believe a single word, uttered by the blood-thirsty mouth of any Russian official in this regard?

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