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Russia Opens Criminal Case Against Ukrainian Military Commanders

November 28, 2016

Prosecutors in Russia have launched a criminal case against Ukrainian security agencies for alleged war crimes committed in the eastern Ukrainian Donbas region.

Svetlana Petrenko, a spokeswoman for Russia's Investigative Committee, told journalists on November 28 that prosecutors have uncovered "previously unknown incidents" of artillery strikes on civilians by Ukrainian military forces.

As a result, a criminal probe against six Ukrainian military commanders has been launched, she said, naming Colonel Oleksandr Hruzevych, Lieutenant Colonel Mykhaylo Drapaty, Colonel Serhiy Panchenko, Colonel Serhiy Perets, and Lieutenant Colonel Volodymyr Horbatyuk.

The commanders are accused of "the use of prohibited means and methods of warfare."

The officers "fulfilled the clearly criminal orders of senior officials of the Ukrainian Defense Ministry," Petrenko said.

Ukraine has not commented on the charges.

According to the United Nations, more than 9,600 people have been killed since the conflict between Kyiv and Russia-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine broke out in April 2014.

Based on reporting by Interfax and TASS

Source: http://www.rferl.org/a/russia-ukraine-criminal-case- artillery-alleged-war-crimes/28143416.html

Copyright (c) 2016. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

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