Amnesty International says it has evidence of war crimes by Russian forces in Ukraine
Amnesty International announced it has evidence of war crimes committed by Russian forces in the Kyiv region during the invasion of Ukraine.
During a press briefing held after a 12-day investigation in around the Ukrainian capital, Amnesty International said Russian forces "must face justice for a series of war crimes" in the Kyiv region.
The organization’s investigation was based "on dozens of interviews and extensive review of material evidence" and has documented "unlawful air strikes on Borodyanka, and extrajudicial executions in other towns and villages including Bucha, Andriivka, Zdvyzhivka and Vorzel."
“The pattern of crimes committed by Russian forces that we have documented includes both unlawful attacks and willful killings of civilians,” Amnesty International’s Secretary General Agnès Callamard said in a statement.
“We have met families whose loved ones were killed in horrific attacks, and whose lives have changed forever because of the Russian invasion. We support their demands for justice, and call on the Ukrainian authorities, the International Criminal Court and others to ensure evidence is preserved that could support future war crime prosecutions," she said. “It is vital that all those responsible, including up the chain of command, are brought to justice."
As part of the investigation, the organization interviewed residents of Bucha, Borodyanka, Novyi Korohod, Andriivka, Zdvyzhivka, Vorzel, Makariv and Dmytrivka.
"We know that the crimes committed against people living around here are not merely anecdotal," Callamard stated. "We know they are part of a pattern that has characterized Russia's conduct of the hostilities from the outset."
In Borodyanka it was found that "at least 40 civilians were killed in disproportionate and indiscriminate attacks, which devastated an entire neighborhood and left thousands of people homeless."
In Bucha and the surrounding area, Amnesty International uncovered "22 cases of unlawful killings by Russian forces, most of which were apparent extrajudicial executions."
The organization also documented a series of Russia air strikes against residential buildings in Borodyanka in early March.
"The strikes killed at least 40 residents and destroyed the buildings, as well as dozens of surrounding buildings and houses. Most of the victims were killed in the buildings’ basements, where they had sought shelter. Others died in their apartments," the organization stated.
"Under the doctrine of command responsibility, hierarchal superiors – including commanders and civilian leaders, such as ministers and heads of state – who knew or had reason to know about war crimes committed by their forces, but did not attempt to stop them or punish those responsible, should also be held criminally responsible," Amnesty International said.