'War Crimes' Committed Against Children By Russia, U.N. Investigators Say

By Bill Galluccio

September 23, 2022

UKRAINE-RUSSIA-CONFLICT-WAR
Photo: Getty Images

Investigators tasked with finding evidence of war crimes during the Russian invasion of Ukraine have provided shocking new details to the United Nations Human Rights Council.

Since March, investigators have been on the ground in Ukraine, visiting 27 locations throughout Kyiv, Chernihiv, Kharkiv, and Sumy and speaking with over 150 victims.

"Based on the evidence gathered by the Commission, it has concluded that war crimes have been committed in Ukraine," Erik Mose, who led the Commission of Inquiry on Ukraine, told the U.N. Human Rights Council in Geneva.

The report details multiple cases of sexual assault, including instances involving children as young as four.

"In the cases, we have investigated, the age of victims of sexual and gendered-based violence ranged from four to 82 years," Mose said. "The Commission has documented cases in which children have been raped, tortured, and unlawfully confined. Children have also been killed and injured in indiscriminate attacks with explosive weapons."

The investigators also found evidence of mass executions, where victims had their hands bound and gunshot wounds to their heads.

"Common elements of such crimes include the prior detention of the victims as well as visible signs of executions on bodies, such as hands tied behind backs, gunshot wounds to the head, and slit throats," Mose explained. "Some of the victims reported that after initial detention by Russian forces in Ukraine, they were transferred to the Russian Federation and held for weeks in prisons. Interlocutors described beatings, electric shocks, and forced nudity, as well as other types of violations in such detention facilities."

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