The Bucha massacre near Kyiv shocked the world, but – as several local people feared – it should not be an isolated case. Massacres by Russian soldiers are also said to have taken place in other Kiev suburbs. The Ukrainian Prosecutor General’s Office has already registered more than 7,000 reports in this regard.
Most of the victims are in Borodyanka, Prosecutor General Iryna Venediktova said on Monday evening, according to the Unian agency. “I think we will talk about Borodyanka separately,” she said. “The situation with civilian casualties is at its worst there.” The prosecutor fears that the events in Borodyanka could “overshadow” those in Bucha. Borodyanka is only 20 kilometers away from Bucha.
President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in a video address on Monday that the number of civilian casualties in Borodyanka and other liberated Ukrainian cities could be much higher than in Bucha. “In many villages of the liberated districts of Kyiv, Chernihiv and Sumy regions, the occupiers did things that the locals didn’t even see during the Nazi occupation 80 years ago. In any case, the occupiers will bear the responsibility for this,” Zelenskyy said.
Zelenskyi underlined the importance of journalists documenting the consequences of the fighting in the liberated Ukrainian cities. “We offer journalists maximum access to Bucha and other liberated cities of Ukraine. For hundreds of journalists from around the world. And we’re interested in having thousands of journalists there. As many as possible! So that the world can see what Russia has done,” he said.
Zelenskyi also warned that Moscow would try to cover up the traces of violence in Bucha and other cities. “You’re trying to twist the facts. But like then, they will not succeed. They will not succeed in fooling the whole world.”
The Russian armed forces announced last week that they would massively reduce their activities around the capital. The Ukrainian armed forces, however, warn that it could be a deception. Western heads of government have since accused the Russians of war crimes. Moscow denies the allegations.