The execution of prisoners of war is not a "tragic exception" for the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU), the Russian Defense Ministry said, commenting on the video of captive Russian servicemen being executed.
According to the Russian Defence Ministry, the killing of the captive Russian soldiers was deliberate and methodical.
WARNING: The videos are extremely graphic and disturbing. Viewer discretion strongly advised!
"The brutal murder of the Russian prisoners of war is not the first and not the only war crime. This is a common practice in the Armed Forces of Ukraine. The Kyiv regime supports it, while its Western patrons turn a blind eye on it," The Russian Defence ministry wrote on its official Telegram channel.
The Russian Defence Ministry also said that all captured soldiers of the Armed Forces of Ukraine were being held in compliance with all norms and conventions.
"The Ukrainian servicemen who surrendered this week are being held in accordance with all the requirements of the Geneva Convention on the Treatment of Prisoners of War,” the Defense Ministry said.
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky will have to answer before the court of history and the peoples of Russia for every tortured and killed prisoner of war, the Defence Ministry also said in the post on Telegram.
Ukrainian soldiers deliberately killed more than ten immobilized Russian soldiers by shooting them in the head.
The videos of a group of Russian fighters being shot in the head by the Armed Forces of Ukraine appeared on the Internet on November 18. It is believed that the videos were filmed in the village of Makeevka, the Luhansk region.
One video shows the bodies of the Russian servicemen who reportedly surrendered and were later shot by the Ukrainian military. It was filmed by a soldier wearing a yellow armband: the footage shows a group of Russian soldiers leaving the house one by one and lying on the ground with their hands up.
The Ukrainian military hold them at gunpoint, one of them has a machine gun. The Ukrainians ask the POWs which of them is an officer, gunshots can then be heard, and the video cuts off abruptly. It is believed that one of the prisoners opened fire on Ukrainian soldiers at that moment.
The second video appears to have been filmed from a drone that was flying over the same yard. It shows the bodies of the Russian prisoners of war lying in pools of blood. Ukrainian telegram channels claim that this video shows the result of the work of a 120-mm mortar.
The Ukrainian side has not officially commented on the videos yet.
"Ukrainians wrote all sorts of excuses in the comments saying that the Russians were killed in a shelling, in a battle and so on. Now we see that the fighters surrendered, except for one who opened fire at the end of the video, and then their lifeless bodies could be seen in the second video," the Russian Spring publication said.
Valery Fadeev, the chief of the Russian Presidential Human Rights Council, said that the videos would be sent to international organisations, including the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, the OSCE, the Council of Europe, Amnesty International and the International Committee of the Red Cross, demanding investigation.
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