Senior US ambassador says THOUSANDS of Ukrainians have been sent to Russian ‘filtration centers

U.S. Ambassador to the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe Michael Carpenter said tens of thousands of Ukrainians have been deported to Russia or Russian-controlled territory

A senior U.S. diplomat on Thursday laid out in the starkest terms how Moscow is forcibly deporting tens of thousands of Ukrainians to Russia or Russian-controlled territory, and that thousands have been processed through so-called ‘filtration centers’ where they have been beaten and tortured.

It is the latest evidence of Russia’s brutal tactics as it pursues a stalled invasion that has failed in its key objectives.

Last month, President Joe Biden labeled Russia’s Ukraine war as a ‘genocide.’

Although other officials did not follow up with the sort of formal declaration that would trigger further intervention, the latest comments will increase pressure on Western nations to do more.

U.S. Ambassador to the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe Michael Carpenter described some of the evidence that could form the basis of criminal trials.

‘As many eyewitness accounts have described in detail, Russia is subjecting many of these civilians to brutal interrogations in so-called “filtration camps,” a process Russia planned before its further invasion of Ukraine on February 24,’ he said in a speech to the OSCE permanent Council in Vienna.

‘During this so-called “filtration” process, Russia’s forces reportedly process and interrogate detained Ukrainian citizens to identify anyone with ties to the Ukrainian government or military, as well as individuals with “pro-Ukraine” convictions.’

He described how detainees’ cell phones have been taken away, passwords coerced from their owners, and social media and messages scanned for evidence of opposition to Russia’s war against Ukraine.

Carpenter did not shy from using strong language in his speech or on Twitter

Carpenter did not shy from using strong language in his speech or on Twitter

Tetyana Pochivalova outside her destroyed house in Vilhivka village, amid Russia's attack on Ukraine, near Kharkiv, as the civilian toll from the invasion grows every day

Tetyana Pochivalova outside her destroyed house in Vilhivka village, amid Russia’s attack on Ukraine, near Kharkiv, as the civilian toll from the invasion grows every day

Ukrainians stand in line to receive humanitarian aid in Kharkiv, Ukraine, 11 May 2022. The Ministry of Defence of Ukraine announced on 10 May that Ukrainian troops had recaptured Kharkiv and villages north and northeast of the city

Ukrainians stand in line to receive humanitarian aid in Kharkiv, Ukraine, 11 May 2022. The Ministry of Defence of Ukraine announced on 10 May that Ukrainian troops had recaptured Kharkiv and villages north and northeast of the city

Vladimir Putin has seen his troops fail to capture the capital Kyiv, and plans for a rapid invasion and capitulation have given way to a brutal, grinding war

Vladimir Putin has seen his troops fail to capture the capital Kyiv, and plans for a rapid invasion and capitulation have given way to a brutal, grinding war

In some cases, passports have been reportedly confiscated, he continued.

‘The United States assesses that Russia’s forces have relocated at least several thousand Ukrainians for processing in these “filtration camps,” and evacuated at least tens of thousands more to Russia or Russia-controlled territory, sometimes without telling evacuees of their final destination,’ he said.

‘From Mariupol alone, we assess that Russia’s forces have forcibly displaced thousands of civilians into Russian territory.

‘Numerous eyewitness accounts indicate that “filtering out” entails beating and torturing individuals to determine whether they owe even the slightest allegiance to the Ukrainian state.’

Survivors described how they feared being taken to the Ukrainian province of Donetsk, run by Russian sympathizers, where they faced a ‘dark fate.’

‘According to one survivor, “If a person was suspected of being a ‘Ukrainian Nazi’, they took them to Donetsk for further investigation or murder…. Everybody was afraid to be taken to Donetsk,” the ambassador continued. 

‘Another survivor recounted a conversation she overheard between two Russian soldiers as she and her family were undergoing “filtration” outside of Mariupol.

‘”What did you do with people who didn’t pass the filtration?” one soldier asked. The response: “Shot 10 and stopped counting.”‘ 

Carpenter said that such displacements breached international humanitarian law. 

‘Mr. Chair, we must not allow this evil to stand,’ he said. 

‘The United States will continue to help Ukraine defend itself against Russia’s war of aggression, end the unconscionable war crimes committed by members of Russia’s forces, and hold those responsible to account.’

Carpenter delivered his powerful account on the day Ukraine prepared for its first war crimes trial since Russia’s invasion began, for a 21-year-old service member accused of gunning down an unarmed 62-year-old from a car window.

Vadim Shishimarin faces life in prison for allegedly killing the civilian with a Kalashnikov rifle as he fled with four other soldiers in a stolen car in a village in Sumy on February 28, just days after the start of the war.

In Geneva, the U.N. Human Rights Council passed a resolution to set up an investigation into possible war crimes by Russian troops in the Kyiv area and beyond before they were driven out at the end of March, a move that Russia said amounted to political score-settling. 

Ukrainian forces are trying to hold the cities of Severodonetsk and Lysychans'k from Russian troops, which have almost managed to surround them. The river crossing attempt was designed to complete the encirclement, but was foiled

Ukrainian forces are trying to hold the cities of Severodonetsk and Lysychans’k from Russian troops, which have almost managed to surround them. The river crossing attempt was designed to complete the encirclement, but was foiled

Russia attempted to bridge the Donets River to the west of the city of Lysychansk on May 8, apparently hoping to surround Ukrainian defenders dug in there - but were found out and massacred

Russia attempted to bridge the Donets River to the west of the city of Lysychansk on May 8, apparently hoping to surround Ukrainian defenders dug in there – but were found out and massacred

Newly-released images of the ambush show dozens of destroyed Russian vehicle littering both banks of the river along with sections of pontoon bridge left floating in the water

Newly-released images of the ambush show dozens of destroyed Russian vehicle littering both banks of the river along with sections of pontoon bridge left floating in the water 

U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet said there were many examples of possible war crimes, including unlawful killings and summary executions.

The man was pushing a bicycle by the side of the road when he was shot in the head and ‘died on the spot a few dozen metres from his home’, the Ukrainian prosecutor general said.

Meanwhile, Russia suffered another huge setback on the battlefield. 

Ukrainian forces drove Russian troops from the region around the country’s second biggest city of Kharkiv in their fastest advance since pushing Moscow to withdraw from around the capital Kyiv.

And they thwarted a Russian attempt to cross a river in Donbas, destroying dozens of vehicles and inflicting heavy casualties.

Satellite images lay bare the scale of the failure with the remains of two pontoon bridges drifting in the Donets River at Bilohorivka, west of the city of Lysychansk, surrounded by the ruins of tanks and armoured vehicles.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.