Ukrainian Prosecutor General Iryna Venediktova, has disclosed plans by her office to charge the first captured Russian soldier for war crimes.
Venediktova on Wednesday, said her office charged Sergeant Vadin Shyshimarin, 21, in the killing of an unarmed 62-year-old civilian who was gunned down while riding a bicycle in February 28, four days into the war.
Shyshimarin, who served with a tank unit, was accused of firing through a car window on the man in the northeastern village of Chupakhivka.
Venediktova who said the soldier could get up to 15 years in prison if convicted, did not however say when the trial would start.
Venediktova added that her office has been investigating more than 10,700 alleged war crimes committed by Russian forces and has identified over 600 suspects.
Many of the alleged atrocities came to light last month after Moscow’s forces aborted their bid to capture Kyiv and withdrew from around the capital, exposing mass graves and streets and yards strewn with bodies in towns such as Bucha.
Residents have also narrated incidences of extra judicial killings, burnings, rape, torture and dismemberment.
Volodymyr Yavorskyy of the Center for Civil Liberties said the Ukrainian human rights group would be closely following Shyshimarin’s trial to see if it was fair.
“It’s very difficult to observe all the rules, norms and neutrality of the court proceedings in wartime,” he said in a statement.
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