Sf Russian troops seem to be concentrating their efforts in the Donbass region, fighting continues in Mariupol and kyiv fears a massive attack in this region. In the kyiv region, after the departure of the Russian army at the end of March, the inhabitants are gradually returning to their homes, for those whose homes have not been completely destroyed, but authorities and civilians remain on their guard. Because despite the withdrawal of the troops, the macabre discoveries are multiplying. The bodies of six people who were shot and killed were found in a basement in the eastern suburbs of kyiv, the Ukrainian General Prosecutor’s Office announced on Tuesday April 12. “The bodies of six civilians with gunshot wounds were discovered in the basement of a house,” the prosecution said on Telegram, accompanying its message with a photograph of corpses and specifying that an investigation had been opened. .
Several hundred bodies of civilians, according to the Ukrainian authorities, have been found in recent days in towns around kyiv, including Boutcha and Irpin, after the withdrawal of Russian troops from this region at the end of March.
At the same time, the Ukrainian authorities are continuing their operations to bring down pro-Russians such as the Ukrainian deputy and businessman Viktor Medvedchuk, close to Vladimir Putin and on the run since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, who was arrested in following a “special operation”.
“Hundreds of rape cases”
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Tuesday denounced “hundreds of cases of rape” observed in areas previously occupied by the Russian army. “In the areas liberated from the occupiers, the recording and investigation of war crimes committed by Russia continues. Almost daily new mass graves are found,” he said, addressing the Lithuanian parliament via video link.
“Thousands and thousands of victims. Hundreds of cases of torture. We continue to find bodies in the pipes and cellars, ”he continued. “Hundreds of cases of rape have been recorded, including those of underage girls and toddlers. Even a baby! It’s scary just to talk about it, ”launched the Ukrainian president. He mentioned, without going into details, a video sent, according to him, by an identified paratrooper or member of the Russian special services, where we see “what he is doing to this baby, how he is torturing him. Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda reacted emotionally to these words. “It is simply impossible to imagine greater horrors: President Zelensky spoke today of a baby being raped,” he said.
The offense continues “calmly” according to Putin
Russian President Vladimir Putin assured Tuesday that the Russian offensive in Ukraine continued “calmly” and minimizing the losses, refusing to set a timetable. “Our task is to accomplish the objectives set while minimizing losses, we will act harmoniously, calmly, in accordance with the plan proposed from the start by the general staff,” Vladimir Putin told a conference press at a cosmodrome in the Russian Far East.
The massacre of suspected civilians in the town of Boutcha, near kyiv, is “a fake”, said Russian President Vladimir Putin, whose country denies any abuse in Ukraine. Comparing these accusations to those concerning the use of chemical weapons by Bashar al-Assad’s regime in Syria, Vladimir Putin affirmed: “We have the same fake in Boutcha. Ukrainian authorities said they discovered dozens of bodies in the town after Russian forces withdrew in late March.
The head of the Kremlin also considered that the “lack of consistency” of Ukrainian negotiators prevented reaching an agreement between kyiv and Moscow to end the Russian offensive in Ukraine. “I was informed last night that the Ukrainian side had changed something again. (…) Such a lack of consistency on fundamental points creates difficulties,” he explained.
Concern over possible chemical weapons attacks in Mariupol
Moscow has now said it is concentrating on the east of the country, including Donbass, which has become the Kremlin’s priority target, raising fears in kyiv of a major Russian offensive “very soon”. More than 870,000 Ukrainians have returned home since the start of the war, including women and children, the Ukrainian Border Guard Service said on Tuesday. Two Ukrainian Caritas workers and five of their relatives were killed in a bombardment in Mariupol, in the south-east of Ukraine, the Catholic charity announced on the same day, referring to an attack in March.
The United States reported Tuesday “credible information” on the possibility that Russia will use “chemical agents” in its offensive to take Mariupol. According to the head of the American diplomacy Antony Blinken, “Russian forces could use different riot control agents, including tear gas mixed with chemical agents” against “Ukrainian fighters and civilians as part of their aggressive campaign to take Mariupol”. . The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) has also expressed concern over these allegations of the use of chemical weapons.
Consult our file: War in Ukraine