Tuesday, 4 October ‘22

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

Tuesday, 4 October ‘22

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

Tuesday, 4 October, 2022

French Investigators to Help Document Izyum Crimes 

Investigators from France’s National Gendarmerie arrived in Izyum to support Ukrainian law enforcement officers document crimes and identify victims in the mass graves unearthed near the eastern Ukrainian city on September 15. The team includes specialists in ballistics, genetics, and forensic medicine.

Ukraine’s national police have already registered 623 war crimes in the  Kharkiv region, which Ukrainian forces regained control of in early September.

Margarita Sokorenko, Ukraine’s commissioner for the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), stated that the ministry of justice was collecting evidence of war crimes in Izyum for the court. The ECHR has jurisdiction, Sokorenko stated, and will consider cases and complaints, not only interstate lawsuits.

Kyiv Region Court Case Concludes 

On September 26, a Ukrainian court issued the first verdict in absentia against a Russian soldier since the beginning of the invasion. Lieutenant Serhiy Steiner, 23, was tried for robbing civilians and destroying property in a village near Kyiv in March.  He was sentenced to nine years in prison. 

According to prosecutors, Steiner, deputy commander of a company located in the village of Totske-2, Orenburg region, was part of a convoy which entered Lukyanivka, a village in the Kyiv region, in March. The prosecutor general’s office stated that throughout March 2022, Steiner gave orders “to break into the homes of civilians and rob them”. 

When Ukraine’s counteroffensive began, Steiner fled the village. He was identified through documents journalists found in an armoured car. 

Proceedings Start Over Shelling Civilians

The prosecutor’s general office has opened pre-trial investigations for violations of the laws and customs of war following Russian attacks against civilians.

On September 30, Russians shelled a civilian humanitarian convoy leaving the eastern city of Zaporizhya; the rocket attack left 25 people dead and dozens injured, including children.

On October 1, Russian forces targeted a convoy of civilian cars in the Kharkiv region, while on October 4 rockets were fired at two districts of the city of Kharkiv, killing one woman.

Case Launched Over Hostomel Shooting

On September 28, the prosecutor general office’s notified in absentia five Russian servicemen on suspicion of shooting at civilian in Hostomel in February 2022. 

The suspects are accused of violating the laws and customs of war, combined with intentional murder. According to the investigation, on February 25 Russian servicemen took up positions in the village of Hostomel, outside Ukraine’s capital Kyiv. For over six hours, the Russian military shot at civilian cars trying to leave the combat zone in the direction of the capital. As a result, five people died and six more were injured.

The indictment stated that “investigators and prosecutors obtained unprecedented evidence of intentional killings of civilians by the Russian army”. 

This publication was prepared under the “Ukraine Voices Project" implemented with the financial support of the UK's Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office (FCDO).

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