150 Ukrainian POWs still detained in Olenivka, says human rights ombudsman

11 December 2022, 03:26 PM
Dmytro Lubinets (Photo:Radio Liberty)

Dmytro Lubinets (Photo:Radio Liberty)

150 Ukrainian prisoners-of-war are still detained in the Russian prisoner of war camp in the occupied town of Olenivka in Donetsk Oblast, the Ukrainian Parliamentary Commissioner for Human Rights, Dmytro Lubinets, said in an interview with the U.S.-funded Radio Liberty on Dec. 10.

He noted that Ukrainian officials will only be able to visit the camp, which was the site of a Russian false flag attack on July 29 that killed at least 40 Ukrainian POWs, after its liberation.

"Once again, we weren't allowed there,” Lubinets explained.

:It seems we will be able to visit Olenivka only after its liberation by the Ukrainian army. As we know, about 150 Ukrainians are there to date. Ukrainian civilians are also being detained there.”

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The ombudsman also criticized the International Committee of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement (ICRC), which he said has proven to be ineffective in its mandate to oversee conditions at penal camps. Lubinets emphasized that he called the ICRC to expel the Russian Red Cross society from the organization.

"I've raised the issue of expelling the Russian Red Cross with the ICRC,” he stated.

“As I have seen it, they took my words and my positions with the utmost seriousness. I expect a proposal from them. It could be some intermediate option.”

On July 29, Ukraine'e General Stuff reported that the Russians had staged a strike at the POW in Olenivka to accuse Ukraine of committing war crimes, while at the same time hiding evidence of torture and executions.

Russian propaganda media reported at least 53 Ukrainian POWs were killed during the attack, which they falsely blamed on Ukraine. The day after, the Russian Defense Ministry published a list of 42 victims. According to Ukraine’s Prosecutor General's Office, about 40 people were killed and 130 injured in this attack.

Discrepancies were found in the lists published by the aggressor country.

The Prosecutor General, Andriy Kostin, said that, according to international experts, thermobaric weapons were the cause of the explosion in the prison colony. Ukraine does not have access to such technology.

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