Russian mercenary Igor Mangushev while giving a speech held up a skull that he claimed belonged to the fallen Ukrainian defender of Azovstal, Ukrainian journalist Denys Kazanskyi reported on his Telegram channel on Aug. 28.
Kazanskyi also posted a video of the incident on Twitter.
In it, Mangushev repeated Russian propaganda narratives and called for the genocide of Ukrainians. The mercenary said Russia is “not fighting people, but the idea” of being Ukrainian, and that “all carriers of this idea must be destroyed.”
Ukrainian Ombudsman Dmytro Lubinets said that Russia was violating international humanitarian law not only in relation to the living, but also to the dead. He has already reported this video to the head of the fact-finding team of the UN Commission of Inquiry on Ukraine, Ole Solvang, and will contact the Office of the Prosecutor General.
According to Lubinets, the Russians continue to dehumanize Ukrainians, justifying the massacres of civilians and the destruction of settlements through their propagandists.
“The only purpose of ... the showing of the ‘remains’ of the fallen defenders of Mariupol ... by Russia is to inflict more pain on the relatives of the dead and the missing,” Lubinets said.
The Ombudsman noted that according to international standards, during war, the bodies of dead civilians and military personnel must be treated with respect, and the remains of unknown persons must be identified.
At the end of July, video of the torture of a Ukrainian soldier appeared on the Web. It shows Russian soldiers pressing a man with a gag in his mouth and bound hands to the ground and using a knife cut off his genitals, and then display them to the camera.
Later, the second part of the video appeared, showing the same Ukrainian prisoner being murdered with shot to the head.
His body was then thrown into a pit.
Lubinets said that Ukraine has identified the invader in the torture video and knows "absolutely everything" about him. The Attorney General's office has launched an investigation into violations of the laws and customs of war in relation to the incident.