Russians using Ukrainians as human shields for army equipment — rights official

Russian soldiers who have taken over the town of Trostyanets, south of Sumy, are forcing residents to shield Russian military equipment with their bodies, a war crime, Ukraine’s human rights comptroller says.

According to a report from Lyudmyla Denisova, the town has been under Russian control for weeks, and Russian soldiers have used it to hide tanks and other military equipment next to homes, stores, administrative buildings, and other civilian infrastructure. People are also forced to spend nights outside in the cold to sit next to the equipment, so Ukrainians do not bomb it.

The report notes that when a local politician was killed and her body left on the street, snipers fired on anyone who tried to retrieve it. A number of other people have been shot and killed by the occupying forces, including three elderly people, who were killed when homes were shelled on Sunday.

Troops are also looting shops, pharmacies, and homes, the report says.

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