The story of that night has two versions, and so far only one is certain: On July 28, an explosion at a prisoner-of-war camp in the village of Olenivka in the pro-Russian separatist region of eastern Ukraine killed more than 50 Ukrainian prisoners of war. , just 12 km from the front line.
Photographs show corpses and bent metal beds in the wreckage of the charred hall. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres announced on Wednesday that a UN commission of inquiry must clarify who is responsible for the crime.
Video from the destroyed camp in Olenivka:
Russia says the fire was caused by a Ukrainian missile attack using US Himars weapons, but has provided no evidence. Ukraine, on the other hand, accuses the Kremlin of causing the massacre. The bombshell was fabricated to cover it up Common in concentration camps And corruption, tell Kyiv.
US Special Services Moscow is reportedly working to falsify evidence of a deadly attack. The PA news agency reported on Thursday, citing US officials, that the Kremlin’s goal was to blame Kiev for the prisoners’ deaths.
The case is particularly explosive because the dead are Ukrainian national heroes. Russian troops were imprisoned in Ołenivka Hundreds of soldiers defended the Azovstal smelter in MariupolUntil it was captured by the Russians. Among them are mainly soldiers of the Azov regiment, which was established in 2014 after the Russian invasion of Crimea.
Kremlin propagandists have long announced Azov is Russia’s main enemy in Ukraine, a personification of the evil it must fight. The narrative is also related to Putin’s alleged “denazification,” one of the reasons for the invasion of Ukraine. On Wednesday, Russia’s Supreme Court classified the brigade as a “terrorist organization,” meaning the Azov prisoners could be sentenced to life in prison in Russia.
In late July, a tweet from the Russian embassy in London showed just how much Russians hate Azov. The embassy said members of Aso “deserved punishment, not by firing squad, but by hanging” as they suffered a “humiliating death”.
It is precisely young people like Danilo Brusova that Russia considers terrorists. Brusov was a soldier of the Azov Regiment’s Special Forces Subdivision. When we met the 24-year-old in Zaporozhye, southern Ukraine, on Tuesday, he was on his way home from a mission near the front. The meeting had one condition: he would not answer any questions about political accusations against Azov, reports about right-wing extremists in his own ranks.
Brusov insists that Azov is a philosophy, a kind of way of life. They are “true patriots” and their foundation is “love for their own country”. They are ready to sacrifice their lives for Ukraine. Being a member of a platoon is difficult. There are selection tests: – We take only the strongest.
Brusov personally knew many of Azov’s soldiers in Russian captivity. In the spring, Brusów Subdivision sent 74 men to support surrounding Mariupol. He never heard from many of them after that. When Olenivka saw the news about the explosion, at first he thought it was Russian propaganda. It is now confirmed that it was an act of terrorism.
“The Kremlin wants to kill Ukrainian heroes,” he says. He didn’t Russian information on the identity of the victims. Brusov hopes that international organizations will help identify them. The International Committee of the Red Cross announced over the weekend that Russia had rejected an application for access to prisoners of war at Olenivka.
The question is what interest would Ukraine have in killing its own national heroes. War means chaos, but it is absurd that a fire would be the result of an accidental fire on the Ukrainians. The penal camp at Olenivka has long had a bad reputation. In recent months There are numerous reports of Russian harassment and torture of prisoners at Olenivka. Ukrainians know exactly where the camp is and who is in it.
However, the Russian Defense Ministry claims that the Ukrainian camp was fired upon by a precision-guided HIMARS missile. It’s the US-based weapons system through which Ukrainian troops have been able to destroy numerous weapons and ammunition depots deep in Russia in recent weeks. According to the US government, there is no evidence that HIMARS was used at Olenivka.
An adviser to the president of Ukraine tweeted that an analysis of the released photos indicated the use of a Russian vacuum bomb. He also showed a satellite photo of the camp.
“This shows that only one of the buildings was destroyed by the explosion,” President Zelensky’s adviser wrote. “The victims were transferred to this unit shortly before the attack.”
This information cannot be verified with certainty, but there are additional indications that this theory is true.
Well-known data analyst Oliver Alexander points to videos from the camp that show POWs “being housed in a completely different part of the camp” in the weeks leading up to the explosion. This is clearly shown in satellite photographs.
Alexander and other researchers also point to trenches dug in the campground. Satellite images taken every day show that the craters were created days before the eruption – and filled in the next day.
Alexander speaks of “possible tombs.” However, based on the information available so far, this cannot be clearly verified. However, similar evidence of mass graves has already been found and confirmed at various locations around Mariupol.
This is not the first time that Russia has denied responsibility for its crimes by providing false or deliberately misleading information. This was revealed by research network Bellingate after the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 in July 2014.. or recently After the Russian massacre in Busa, Ukraine.
Azov, the commander of the brigade, has already announced his revenge. He will “hunt down” all those involved in the “mass murder” in Olenivka. Daniło Brusov also says that he is angry when he sees Olenivka’s pictures. “The Russians are war criminals and they should pay for it,” he says. – I have a desire to punish any person who has anything to do with it as severely as possible.
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