Nine people—two small children among them—were found shot to death in their home in Volnovakha, an eastern Ukrainian family village under Russian control. Both Ukraine and both countries have inquired about this unfortunate tragedy, which has incited resentment.
Images released by the Ukrainian family Donetsk Region Prosecutor’s Office showed a horrific crime scene where a number of family members had been shot and killed while still hugging each other in bed, leaving bloodstains on the walls.
While Russian authorities state that two Russian soldiers have been captured in connection with the deaths, Ukraine maintains that the family was slain by Russian occupying forces following a dispute.
Since March 2022, Russian forces have been occupying Volnovakha as a result of Russia’s violent invasion of the neighboring country the month before.
The family living in the residence was asked to leave to make way for a Russian army unit by people dressed in military uniform, according to a report earlier this month from the Donetsk Region Prosecutor’s Office in Ukraine.
According to the initial details, “the intruders issued threats of physical harm to his family members and departed” when the homeowner declined.
A few days later, gunmen reappeared and, according to the Ukrainian family prosecutor’s office, “fatally wounded all nine family members while they were already in a state of slumber.”
“A pre-trial investigation was initiated in criminal proceedings over violation of the laws and customs of war,” it said.
Monday saw the announcement by Russian officials that they had detained two Russian soldiers in relation to the nine deaths that had occurred in Volnovakha. In a statement, the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation for the Donetsk People’s Republic said that the people in question were “Russian military personnel from the Far East who are serving under contractual agreements.”
The committee stated that an investigation had been started into the “killing of nine Volnovakha town residents, including two children, who were discovered with gunshot wounds inside a private residential home” on October 28. According to Russian investigators, “a domestic dispute was the reason for the crime,” according to the preliminary assessment.
“The suspects were detained and taken to the investigative department; investigative and procedural actions aimed at establishing all the circumstances of the incident, as well as consolidation of the evidence base, are being carried out with them,” the committee said.
Russian forces have been bombarding civilian areas in eastern Ukraine, but Ukrainian family troops have successfully withstood a new Russian offensive in recent weeks. Furthermore, Ukraine has issued orders requiring citizens to evacuate, with an emphasis on children residing in locations close to the frontlines in the country’s east and south.
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