Ukraine promises ‘immediate investigation’ after videos of soldiers shooting Russian prisoners  

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A video has surfaced showing what appears to be Ukrainian soldiers shooting men who are apparently Russian prisoners in the knees during an operation in the Kharkiv region. In the nearly six-minute video, Ukrainian soldiers are heard saying they captured a Russian reconnaissance group operating from Olkhovka, a settlement in Kharkiv about 20 miles from the Russian border. Asked about the video, a senior presidential adviser, Oleksiy Arestovych, said in an interview posted on YouTube on Sunday: “The government takes this very seriously, and there will be an immediate investigation. We are a European army, and we don’t Let’s not make fun of our prisoners. If this turns out to be real, it is absolutely unacceptable behavior. In a separate briefing, Arestovych said, “We treat prisoners in accordance with the Geneva Convention, regardless of your personal emotional motives.” CNN has contacted the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense for comment. In response, the ministry sent CNN a statement from the head of the armed forces, Valerii Zaluzhnyi. The statement did not refer directly to the incident, but said: “In order to discredit the Ukrainian Defense Forces, the enemy is filming and distributing staged videos showing inhumane treatment by alleged ‘Ukrainian soldiers’ of ‘prisoners Russians”. “I emphasize that servicemen of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and other legitimate military formations strictly adhere to the norms of international humanitarian law,” Zaluzhnyi said. “I urge you to consider the realities of informational and psychological warfare and trust only official sources.” It is not known which Ukrainian unit may have been involved. The soldiers speak a mixture of Ukrainian and Russian with Ukrainian accents. The video comes as Ukrainian forces advance east and south of Kharkiv. CNN has geotagged and verified a lengthy video uploaded to Telegram on Saturday showing a successful assault by Ukrainian troops from the Azov Battalion, in which they took several Russian prisoners during a rapid assault on Olkhovka, also known as from Vilkhivka. Some of the prisoners were stripped naked and blindfolded. This video was posted by Konstantin Nemichev, a regional official from Kharkiv who took part in the attack on Olkhovka. He told CNN he was not associated with the footage that emerged showing Ukrainian troops kneeing Russian prisoners. “It’s not our location…I haven’t seen such a place,” he told CNN on Sunday. He suggested the video was shot “maybe somewhere in the [Kharkiv] Region.” In the first response from the Russian authorities, the Chairman of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation, AI Bastrykin, said that an investigation would be opened “to establish all the circumstances of the mistreatment of captured soldiers by Ukrainian nationalists”. . In a statement, Bastrykin said: “Images have appeared on the internet in which prisoners have been treated with extreme cruelty by Ukrainian nationalists. Video circulating online shows soldiers being captured, shot in both legs and without medical assistance. actions took place in one of the bases of Ukrainian nationalists in the Kharkiv region.”


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