As the war in Ukraine enters its seventh week, Monday April 4, theWesterners have called for the investigation of “war crimes” attributed to Russian soldiers in the kyiv region, particularly in Boutcha. Many bodies of civilian victims continue to be discovered there after the Russian withdrawal. Moscow rejects “categorically all charges”. Franceinfo looks back on the key events of the day.
Ukrainian President Volodomyr Zelensky denounces “genocide”
Looking grave, wearing a khaki coat and a camouflage-colored body armor, Volodomyr Zelensky spent half an hour in Boutcha, where he accused Russian forces of committing “war crimes” will be “recognized as genocide”. His trip – the first out of kyiv since the Russian invasion – had not been announced. The Ukrainian president arrived in the middle of the day, surrounded by a close guard of armed soldiers. From then on, communications with the outside world became impossible, no telephone network was accessible.
Bodies continue to be discovered in Boutcha and its surroundings
The bodies of five men with their hands tied were found in the basement of a children’s sanatorium in Bucha, the office of the Prosecutor General of Ukraine announced. Those “unarmed civilians” whose corpses were unearthed by the police were “beaten” before being “you are beautiful” by “soldiers of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation”we assured from the same source on Telegram.
Dozens of corpses wearing civilian clothes were discovered this weekend in Boutcha, in the streets or in mass graves, after the withdrawal of the Russian army.
In the small village of Motyzhyn, west of kyiv, the bodies of the mayor, that of her husband, their son and two other men were discovered. The bodies were half-buried in a pit dug in a pine forest bordering the mayor’s house, and the body of another man lay at the bottom of a small well in the garden. According to the police, the five people had their hands tied behind their backs.
Moscow “categorically” denies all these accusations
Russia will present Monday, at a press conference at the United Nations headquarters in New York, “docs” showing, according to her, the “true nature” events in Boutcha, announced its Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sergei Lavrov. The Kremlin has “categorically” denied all charges related to the discovery of a large number of dead civilians in that town. Sergei Lavrov called the body images “false”denouncing a campaign of “propaganda” and of “disinformation”.
Towards new Western sanctions and expelled Russian diplomats
The United States and its allies want to announce “this week” new economic sanctions against Russia, announced White House National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan. Discussions focus in particular on possible measures “related to energy”a very sensitive subject for Europeans, who are very dependent on Russian gas.
JakeSullivan insisted on the search for “consensus” with the European Union, which for its part is discussing “emergency” new sanctions against Moscow.
France and Germany have also announced the massive expulsion of Russian diplomats from their countries. “This action is part of a European approach”according to a press release from the French ministry.
A “massive attack” in eastern and southern Ukraine feared
Russian forces are preparing a “massive attack” against Ukrainian troops in the Lugansk region in eastern Ukraine, announced its governor, Serguiï Gaïdaï. “We see that equipment is coming from different directions, that they (the Russians) are bringing men, that they are bringing fuel”he said in a video message.
Earlier, a senior Pentagon official said thehe two-thirds of the Russian forces that had occupied the kyiv region since the start of the invasion had withdrawn to Belarus, with a view, according to him, to a new assault elsewhere in Ukraine. Russia “is in the process of repositioning its forces to focus its offensive on eastern and parts of southern Ukraine”the White House national security adviser confirmed on Monday.
“Russia tried to subjugate all of Ukraine and failed. Now it will try to impose itself in certain parts of the country”judged JakeSullivanconsidering that this new phase of the Russian military offensive “could last for months or more”.