More than 3,000 bodies of civilians found in Mariupol – RT Russia and the former Soviet Union

Russian investigators blamed the death on Ukrainian troops who allegedly forced residents to stay in the town

Criminal actions by Ukrainian troops during the Battle of Mariupol left thousands of civilians dead, Russian investigators said. Local authorities have recovered more than 3,000 bodies of people who were forced to stay in the city by Kyiv troops, they reported.

The figure was revealed on Friday in a statement from the Russian Investigative Committee, whose head, Aleksandr Bastrykin, held a meeting in Mariupol with senior officials involved in the Russian investigation into alleged Ukrainian crimes.

The port city in the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR), which joined Russia in October, saw intense fighting between February and May as Ukrainian troops were pushed back and surrounded by Russian and military forces. DPR. Russia has created humanitarian corridors to allow civilians to leave the city, but the Ukrainian side would not allow them to use the evacuation routes, Russian officials said.

“Without the possibility of leaving the city, the civilians moved in search of food and became living targets for the Ukrainian punishers, who murdered them using various types of weapons,” the statement said.

In April alone, the bodies of 51 civilians were found at positions previously occupied by Ukrainian forces, while the total number of dead civilians found in the city was more than 3,000, according to prosecutors.

Russia has opened criminal charges against those directly involved in the alleged transgressions as well as their superiors in the Ukrainian chain of command. The list includes General Valery Zaluzhny, the head of the country’s armed forces, according to the commission of inquiry. They are being questioned for offenses related to the use of prohibited methods of warfare, with prosecutors gathering evidence of possible criminal orders to kill civilians and prisoners of war.

Officials noted that identifying many victims was difficult. They suggested that people looking for missing relatives in Mariupol be asked to donate their DNA so that the samples could be compared against a database of samples taken from recovered bodies.

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