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“They treated us like animals”: ​​a Ukrainian prisoner of war spoke about his days in Russian captivity – War in Ukraine

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Many of the 215 Ukrainians handed over to Kyiv by Moscow in a major prisoner of war exchange showed signs of torture. The former Marine spoke about his days in captivity, in Olenevskaya Prison in Donetsk, and how Russian soldiers treated them “like animals.”

When Ukrainian soldier Mykhailo Dianov was released from Russian custody, his photograph shocked the world. In an interview with a British newspaper skynewsthe man spoke for the first time about the months spent in prison, which he called a “Russian concentration camp”.

Mikhailo was captured by the Russians a few weeks after the capture of Mariupol in May. “After a month of fasting, when we closed our eyes, we forgot about our family, about our country, about everything. The only thing we thought about was food,” Mihailo told SkyNews.

Mikhailo lost 40 kg in four months in captivity. “Eating was impossible. We were given 30 seconds for each meal,” the former Marine said. “For 30 seconds we tried to eat everything we could. The bread was very hard. Prisoners who had their teeth pulled out could not eat on time. They treated us like animals.”

To skynewsMikhailo reported that the prisoners were constantly “beaten with sticks, tortured with electric shocks, and had needles stuck under their nails.”

Satellite images have shown that the layout of the Olenevskaya prison resembles concentration camps with blocks in which prisoners were kept. Mikahilo said that the blocks were designed for 150 people, but each contained about 800 prisoners.

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Before being taken prisoner, Mikhailo photographed the bandage on his right arm, which was broken. During his stay in captivity, the bone has grown together in a semicircle, due to the lack of medical care. He now needs to gain 20 kg before he can have corrective surgery on his arm.

Regarding the day of the release of 215 prisoners, Mihailo recalled this moment: “They stripped us and left us completely naked. We were searched and then ordered to duck down, and we sat there for five hours. .”

The prisoners traveled for 36 hours with their eyes taped shut. They went from bus to plane, back to bus. Only after the film was removed, Mikhailo realized that he had returned to Ukraine.

“We are all traumatized,” he said, “I consider myself a mentally strong person, but for me a lot has lost its value.”

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Vladimir Putin has delayed the invasion of Ukraine at least three times.

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Putin has repeatedly consulted with Russian Chief of the General Staff Valery Gerasimov and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu about the invasion, Europa Press told Ukraine’s chief intelligence director Vadim Skibitsky.

According to Skibitsky, it was the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB), which is responsible for counterintelligence and espionage work, that put pressure on Gerasimov and other military agencies to agree to launch an offensive. .

However, according to the Ukrainian intelligence services, the FSB considered that by the end of February sufficient preparations had already been made to guarantee the success of the Russian Armed Forces in a lightning invasion.

However, according to Kyiv, the Russian General Staff provided the Russian troops with supplies and ammunition for only three days, hoping that the offensive would be swift and immediately successful.

The head of Ukrainian intelligence also emphasized the cooperation of local residents, who always provided the Ukrainian authorities with up-to-date information about the Russian army, such as the number of soldiers or the exact location of troops.

The military offensive launched on February 24 by Russia in Ukraine caused at least 6.5 million internally displaced persons and more than 7.8 million refugees to European countries, which is why the UN classifies this migration crisis as the worst in Europe since World War II (1939-1945). gg.). ).

At the moment, 17.7 million Ukrainians are in need of humanitarian assistance, and 9.3 million are in need of food aid and housing.

The UN has presented as confirmed 6,755 civilian deaths and 10,607 wounded since the beginning of the war, stressing that these figures are much lower than the real ones.

See also  UNITA believes in victory, even if the parallel count doesn't say so yet | 2022 Angola elections

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Life sentence for former Swedish official for spying for Russia

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A Stockholm court on Monday sentenced a former Swedish intelligence officer to life in prison for spying for Russia, and his brother to at least 12 years in prison. In what is considered one of the most serious cases in Swedish counterintelligence history, much of the trial took place behind closed doors in the name of national security.

According to the prosecution, it was Russian military intelligence, the GRU, who took advantage of the information provided by the two brothers between 2011 and their arrest at the end of 2021.

Peyman Kia, 42, has held many senior positions in the Swedish security apparatus, including the army and his country’s intelligence services (Säpo). His younger brother, Payam, 35, is accused of “participating in the planning” of the plot and of “managing contacts with Russia and the GRU, including passing on information and receiving financial rewards.”

Both men deny the charges, and their lawyers have demanded an acquittal on charges of “aggravated espionage,” according to the Swedish news agency TT.

The trial coincides with another case of alleged Russian espionage, with the arrest of the Russian-born couple in late November in a suburb of Stockholm by a police team arriving at dawn in a Blackhawk helicopter.

Research website Bellingcat identified them as Sergei Skvortsov and Elena Kulkova. The couple allegedly acted as sleeper agents for Moscow, having moved to Sweden in the late 1990s.

According to Swedish press reports, the couple ran companies specializing in the import and export of electronic components and industrial technology.

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The man was again detained at the end of November for “illegal intelligence activities.” His partner, suspected of being an accomplice, has been released but remains under investigation.

According to Swedish authorities, the arrests are not related to the trial of the Kia brothers.

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Ukraine admitted that Russia may announce a general mobilization

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“They can strengthen their positions. We understand that this can happen. At the same time, we do not rule out that they will announce a general mobilization,” Danilov said in an interview with the Ukrainska Pravda online publication.

Danilov believed that this mobilization would also be convened “to exterminate as many as possible” of Russian citizens, so that “they would no longer have any problems on their territory.”

In this sense, Danilov also reminded that Russia has not given up on securing control over Kyiv or the idea of ​​the complete “destruction” of Ukraine. “We have to be ready for anything,” he said.

“I want everyone to understand that [os russos] they have not given up on the idea of ​​destroying our nation. If they don’t have Kyiv in their hands, they won’t have anything in their hands, we must understand this,” continued Danilov, who also did not rule out that a new Russian offensive would come from “Belarus and other territories.” .

As such, Danilov praised the decision of many of its residents who chose to stay in the Ukrainian capital when the war broke out in order to defend the city.

“They expected that there would be panic, that people would run, that there would be nothing to protect Kyiv,” he added, referring to President Volodymyr Zelensky.

The military offensive launched on February 24 by Russia in Ukraine caused at least 6.5 million internally displaced persons and more than 7.8 million refugees to European countries, which is why the UN classifies this migration crisis as the worst in Europe since World War II (1939-1945). gg.). ).

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At the moment, 17.7 million Ukrainians are in need of humanitarian assistance, and 9.3 million are in need of food aid and housing.

The Russian invasion, justified by Russian President Vladimir Putin on the need to “denazify” and demilitarize Ukraine for Russia’s security, was condemned by the international community at large, which responded by sending weapons to Ukraine and imposing political and economic sanctions on Russia.

The UN has presented as confirmed 6,755 civilian deaths and 10,607 wounded since the beginning of the war, stressing that these figures are much lower than the real ones.

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