"They beat captives with rubber, wooden batons, tortured them with hunger": Dmytro Lubinets on Ukrainian POWs' detention by invading Russian forces
The Human Rights Commissioner of the Verkhovna Rada, Ukraine's parliament, Dmytro Lubinets says that the invading Russian forces kept Ukrainian prisoners of war (POWs) in inhumane conditions and brutally beat them
Lubinets said this at a briefing at Media Center Ukraine.
According to him, constant torture and beating of prisoners of war began from the first minutes of arrival at the places of detention.
"Immediately upon arrival, the captives were beaten with rubber batons, if they broke - with wooden ones. There were cases when they were forced to walk with their heads down, and those who violated were beaten additionally," Lubinets said.
The Ombudsman also said that the Russian military forced the prisoners of war to sleep on bare concrete without blankets and did not provide personal hygiene products. At the same time, Lubinets emphasized that this attitude is not an exception, but a general practice.
"Means for personal hygiene were not provided at all. Such things as toilet paper - it was never provided. Soap, toothbrushes, toothpaste - such things were not provided," Lubinets said.
The Ombudsman noted that the prisoners of war were given very little food and water, and hunger became one of the elements of torture.
"Everyone drastically lost weight. I talked to a guy who lost 63 kilograms. A guy from Azov said he lost more than 70. The least I heard was a guy who lost 25 kilograms despite the fact that he himself is very short," Lubinets said.
In addition, the Ombudsman noted that the Russian Federation still does not allow representatives of the Ukrainian authorities to enter the colony in the temporarily occupied Olenivka, Donetsk region.
"The official reason is that I should not appeal to the ombudsman of Russia, but to the ombudsman of the so-called "DPR", because it is a "separate state", and there is a "separate ombudsman". The whole world understands that this is a territory captured by the Russian Federation, everyone says so, except the Russian Federation. This is an attempt to hide from responsibility," Lubinets emphasized.
The Ombudsman also added that a separate UN mission did not come to Olenivka and did not conduct an investigation.
"The UN claims that they are waiting for permission from the Russian Federation to enter. But everyone understands that Russia has long since removed the evidence of a war crime in Olenivka, as it was a planned operation to destroy a separate category of military personnel - Azov soldiers."
Lubinets also spoke about a separate line of work - the release of civilians. According to him, there are cases when the Russian occupiers recognize civilians as combatants, which is contrary to the Geneva Convention. The Ombudsman said that it is currently known about civilian doctors from Mariupol who were declared prisoners of war by the occupying Russian forces.