” He won’t come back “. In its report published this Friday, titled after the response of a Russian soldier to an old man whose son-in-law he had just executed, Amnesty International accurately documents war crimes committed by the Russian army in Ukraine. The investigation lasted 12 days, and focused on the liberated townships northwest of kyiv, with Boutcha as the epicenter.
The NGO describes in particular “five manifest extrajudicial executions” committed by the Russians between March 4 and 19. If this seems very small compared to the number of corpses found in the streets at the time of the liberation of the city, which had left the Western world in shock, these cases are substantiated with precision. The investigators collected the testimonies of the families of the victims, the bullets and casings on the scene of the crime, as well as Russian military documents allowing to identify more precisely the culprits.
“We have irrefutable proof”, “we affirm that there are war crimes which are committed on Ukrainian soil”, insisted the vice-president of Amnesty International, Jean-Claude Samouiller, on France Info. The NGO thus counted 22 “illegal homicides”, recalling that “extrajudicial executions are war crimes”.
The report also highlights “illegal bombardments” in Borodianka, having hit “eight residential buildings”. “Inside lived 600 families, and 42 civilians were killed”, denounces Jean-Claude Samouiller. “No Ukrainian military targets were in or near the buildings that were struck,” the report said, citing many harrowing testimonies.
Amnesty International now hopes that this report and the evidence provided can lead to a judicial follow-up to these war crimes. “By virtue of the principle of the responsibility of the hierarchy, the hierarchical superiors, in particular the military commanders and the civil leaders” must be held responsible in addition to the soldiers who are perpetrators of these abuses, wishes the NGO. But “it will be very difficult to judge Vladimir Poutine”, recognizes Jean-Claude Samouiller.