Tuesday, 11 June ‘24

This week’s overview of key events and links to essential reading.

Tuesday, 11 June ‘24

This week’s overview of key events and links to essential reading.

Tuesday, 11 June, 2024


Institute for War & Peace Reporting

Russian Colonel-General Issued Suspicion for Destruction of Kakhovka Dam  

Russian Colonel-General Oleg Makarevych has been issued a suspicion in absentia for alleged responsibility for the June 6, 2023 explosion that destroyed the Kakhovska dam in the southern region of Kherson. The security service (SBU) suspects the 61-year-old ex-commander of Russia’s Dnieper troops coordinated the destruction of the critical facility in violation of the laws and customs of war, combined with intentional murder, committed by a group of persons based on a prior conspiracy (Part 2 of Article 28, Part 2 of Article 438 of the criminal code). According to the investigation, Makarevych specifically coordinated the engineering and sapper service and the 205th separate motorised rifle brigade, which activated the explosive mechanism that breached the dam, leading to its collapse. 

The destruction caused extensive flooding in the lower Dnieper, leaving 35 dead and 24 still missing; 66 settlements in the regions of Kherson and Mykolaiv regions were inundated. It also disrupted the operation of the cooling system of the Zaporizhzhya nuclear power plant. 

The Kakhovka hydroelectric power station and the dam were located about five kilometres from Nova Kakhovka, a city in the Kherson region, which was occupied in the early days of Russia’s all-out invasion.  

Investigation of Ill-Treatment of Ukrainian POWs 

Ukrainian law enforcement officers have opened a pre-trial investigation into the case of ill-treatment of Ukrainian prisoners of war in violation of the laws and customs of war as per Part 1 of Article 438 of the criminal code. The office of the prosecutor general published  screenshots of a video, found on social media, showing the brutal treatment of Ukrainian military personnel by Russian forces in the Kharkiv area. 

In the footage Russian soldiers inflict physical injuries on Ukrainian soldiers, simulating an execution and applying psychological pressure, for example forcing them to sing the USSR anthem. Such actions are a violation of the Geneva Conventions.  

According to official data, more than 450 cases of ill-treatment of prisoners of war have been registered in Ukraine since Russia launched its all-out invasion on February 24, 2022. There are 27 criminal proceedings ongoing based on the execution of 61 Ukrainian prisoners of war. 

Ukraine’s prosecutor general Andriy Kostin said that Moscow had created a dedicated infrastructure for Ukrainian prisoners, with at least 25 facilities installed across 15 Russian regions. 

Russian Soldier Suspected of Rape in Kherson Region 

Police investigators sent a suspicion in absentia to 33-year-old Russian military officer Alexei Nemtsov on charges of raping a girl in the southern region of Kherson in December 2022.  

In December 2022, the serviceman was reportedly in Oleshki, an occupied town in the Kherson region, nine kilometres from Kherson on the left bank of the Dnipro River. The suspect, together with other Russian soldiers, stopped a 15-year-old local resident to be checked. A few days later, they met the girl again and, threatening her with a weapon, forced her to get into their car and took her to a seized private home. There Nemtsov raped her while another Russian soldier guarded the building. 

According to the investigation, Nemtsov hails from Russia’s south-western city of Stavropol and serves in the 126th Separate Guards Horliv Red Banner Coastal Defence Brigade. He is accused of violating the laws and customs of war for cruel treatment of the civilian population due to a previous conspiracy by a group of persons as per Part 2 of Article 28 and Part 1 of Article 438 of the criminal code.  

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