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Kyiv says Russian forces shot surrendering Ukrainian troopers. If confirmed, it could be a warfare crime

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KYIV, Ukraine — Ukrainian officers on Sunday accused Russian forces of killing surrendering Ukrainian troopers, a warfare crime if confirmed, after grainy footage on social media appeared to indicate two uniformed males being shot at shut vary after rising from a dugout.

The video reveals the servicemen, considered one of them along with his palms up, strolling out at gunpoint and mendacity down on the bottom earlier than a gaggle of Russian troops seems to open hearth. It was not instantly potential to confirm the video’s authenticity or the circumstances wherein it was taken.

The Ukrainian Basic Prosecutor’s workplace on Sunday launched a prison investigation, hours after the Ukrainian navy’s press workplace stated in a web based assertion that the footage is real.

“The video reveals a gaggle in Russian uniforms capturing, at point-blank vary, two unarmed servicemen within the uniform of the Armed Forces of Ukraine who have been surrendering,” the prosecutor’s workplace stated in a Telegram replace on Sunday.

Kyiv, its Western allies and worldwide human rights organizations have repeatedly accused Moscow of breaching worldwide humanitarian regulation because it launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022. The Kremlin denies these allegations.

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The video first appeared Saturday on DeepState, a well-liked Ukrainian Telegram channel overlaying the warfare. The submit claimed the footage got here from the entrance strains close to Avdiivka, a Ukrainian holdout within the nation’s part-occupied east the place there was fierce preventing in current weeks.

The Basic Prosecutor’s Workplace on Sunday stated that the incident passed off within the Pokrovsk district, which incorporates Avdiivka and surrounding areas.

“It’s clear from the video that the Ukrainian servicemen are taking the required steps that present they’re surrendering,” Ukraine’s human rights chief, Dmytro Lubinets, stated hours after the footage emerged on Saturday.

In an announcement posted to Telegram, Lubinets described the incident as “one more evident instance of Russia’s violations of worldwide humanitarian regulation.”

Oleksandr Shtupun, a spokesperson for the Ukrainian navy grouping that’s preventing close to Avdiivka, was cited by Ukrainian media as saying the video was “evident affirmation” of Moscow’s disrespect for the legal guidelines of warfare.

In March, footage of a person exclaiming “Glory to Ukraine” earlier than being gunned down in a wooded space sparked nationwide outcry in Ukraine, as senior officers alleged that he was an unarmed prisoner of warfare killed by Russian troopers.

Final summer time, Kyiv and Moscow additionally traded blame for a shelling assault on a jail in occupied japanese Ukraine that killed dozens of Ukrainian POWs. Either side claimed the assault on the ability in Olenivka was geared toward overlaying up atrocities, with Ukrainian officers charging captive troopers had been tortured and executed there.

The U.N.’s human rights chief in July rejected Moscow’s declare {that a} rocket strike had induced the blast.

Additionally on Sunday, Ukraine’s power ministry reported that near 1,000 cities and villages suffered energy outages that day, with lots of of settlements within the west battered by wintry climate and others affected by ongoing preventing.

The Institute for the Research of Battle, a Washington-based suppose tank, late on Saturday assessed that navy operations have slowed down all alongside the frontline in Ukraine attributable to poor climate, with mud bogging down tracked automobiles and making it exhausting for lighter tools and infantry to advance.


Kozlowska reported from London.

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