24/02/2023 09:02
Ukrainian human rights activists have systematized war crimes of the Russian Federation

     EUCCI experts summed up the results of the first year of the war. During 2022, the team of the Eastern Ukrainian Center for Civic Initiatives continued its work, which began in 2014, to collect evidence and document violations of international humanitarian law. In the course of this work, 12 types of war crimes committed by the Russian military on the territory of Ukraine were identified. In particular:

  • Premeditated murder, extrajudicial executions and torture of the civilian population and combatants. Mass burial sites where bodies with signs of torture were found in each de-occupied territory. In such a way, on 23 September, the exhumation process was completed in the de-occupied town of Izyum (Kharkiv region). 447 bodies of the dead were recovered from the graves. Of these, 215 were female, 194 male, 5 children, and 22 were military personnel.


  • Sexual assault. On 23 July, the UN Secretary-General's special representative for sexual violence in conflict, Pramila Patten, said that since 24 February, the UN has received more than 150 allegations of sexual violence.


  • Starting from 11 September, Russian troops began to fire actively at the energy infrastructure objects of Ukraine. This caused serious problems with electricity in all regions of Ukraine without exception. As of December 2022, about 50% of critical electricity infrastructure objects in Ukraine were either significantly damaged or completely destroyed.


  • Threat to high-risk structures and installations. Ukrainian nuclear power plants were targeted by the Russian invasion. From 24 February to 31 March, Russian troops were stationed in the territory of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant. Over this time, up to 50 units of military equipment and about 1,000 soldiers were stationed in the territory of the nuclear power plant.


On 05 June and 26 June, video surveillance cameras of the South Ukrainian NPP recorded the flight of missiles over the plant's territory. On 04 March, the Russian military seized the Zaporizhzhya nuclear power plant. As of February of 2023, the armed forces of the Russian Federation continued to threaten safe operation of the nuclear installations of Ukraine by their actions.


  • Famine as a method of warfare it is often used by Russian troops. Of the 86 days of defense of Mariupol, the city was completely surrounded for 82 days. Since the beginning of March (in some districts – from 24 February), there was no centralized water supply (including drinking water), electricity, heating, and it was not possible to buy food. There was information about famine among the civilian population.


A similar tactics of artificially creating a humanitarian and food crisis was used by Russian troops in the Luhansk region. For example, it was alleged that food warehouses in the city of Severodonetsk (Luhansk region), which was defended by Ukrainian troops, were precisely targeted.


  • There are numerous facts of looting. A typical example is the case of the theft in March 2022 of John Deere agricultural machinery from the private company "Agrotek" worth 1 million EUR in the occupied city of Melitopol (Zaporizhzhya region). Thanks to the positioning systems installed on the equipment, the company's specialists found that the equipment was moved to the territory of the farm in the village of Zakan-Yurt in the Chechen Republic (Russian Federation).


  • Arbitrary detentions and deprivation of freedom of civilians. During 2022, there was a constant practice of arbitrary detentions by the law enforcement of the Russian Federation, and detention of the civilian population of the occupied territories in illegal places of imprisonment. According to the estimates of the Ukrainian authorities, in Mariupol alone, 25 thousand people were killed or went missing obscurely.


  • During the year, notifications of deportation and forced displacement of civilians came from the occupied territories. This is about Mariupol, where this phenomenon has become massive. It is known about deportation of the occupied municipalities of Kharkiv region, Kherson region and Donbass. Already on 20 April, Ukraine's Permanent Representative to the UN Serhiy Kyslytsya said at a meeting of the UN Security Council that the Russians have forcibly displaced more than 500 thousand Ukrainians, including 121 thousand children, to Russia.


For more information about the revealed facts, see the summary digest.

Previous digests of human rights violations are available here: