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Video shows Russian soldiers shooting Ukrainian civilians in the back

Footage aired by CNN shows group of Russian soldiers killing two men as they walk away outside a car dealership on the outskirts of Kyiv in March

Surveillance footage published by CNN shows Russian soldiers shooting two civilians in the back on March 16, 2022, on the outskirts of Kyiv. (Screenshot)
Surveillance footage published by CNN shows Russian soldiers shooting two civilians in the back on March 16, 2022, on the outskirts of Kyiv. (Screenshot)

Video published by CNN on Thursday shows Russian soldiers shooting civilians outside a car dealership on the outskirts of Kyiv before ransacking the building.

In the footage, which CNN said was surveillance video taken on March 16, a group of Russian soldiers can be seen approaching the building and conversing with two civilians standing outside.

The two men then turn and walk away from the Russian soldiers, past the building. With their backs to the soldiers, they don’t see two of them raise their weapons and calmly shoot them from behind. The two men can be seen falling to the ground.

According to CNN, both men were killed. One was identified as Leonid Oleksiyovych Plyats, 68, who worked as a security guard at the building. The family of the other man asked for his identity not to be revealed. In the video, Plyats can be seen getting up minutes after being shot and calling for help. But he ultimately did not survive.

Plyats’s daughter Yulia told CNN that she cannot bring herself to watch the video footage of her father being murdered.

“I can’t watch it now. I will save it to the cloud and leave it for my grandchildren and children,” she said. “They should know about this crime and always remember who our neighbors are.”

CNN said Ukrainian prosecutors have told them that the incident is being investigated as a war crime.

Ukraine announced on Wednesday that it will hold its first war crimes trial over the Russian invasion.

Kyiv has repeatedly accused Russian troops of committing atrocities since the invasion began on February 24, and Ukrainian authorities said they would launch the first war crimes trial of the conflict.

The prosecutor general’s office said Vadim Shishimarin, a 21-year-old Russian service member, is accused of killing an unarmed 62-year-old civilian as he fled with four other soldiers in a stolen car.

“The man died on the spot just a few dozen meters from his home,” said a statement from prosecutor Iryna Venediktova’s office. Shishimarin faces possible life imprisonment if found guilty.

Venediktova’s office has said it has received reports of more than 10,000 alleged war crimes, with 622 suspects identified.

A Ukrainian National Guard soldier sits inside a tank at a position near Kharkiv, Ukraine, May 9, 2022. (Felipe Dana/AP)

On Thursday, Ukrainian authorities and witnesses interviewed by AFP accused Russian forces of shelling a residential home in an east Ukrainian village from a tank, killing several civilians.

The incident took place on March 27 in the village of Stepanki outside the regional capital Kharkiv, when occupying Russian forces opened fire on a house from a tank, killing two men and a woman, Ukraine’s prosecutor general’s office said on Telegram.

Kharkiv police and witnesses said four people were killed and two wounded. The discrepancy could not be immediately explained. An investigation into a war crime and premeditated murder has been opened, according to prosecutors.

The United Nations Human Rights Council voted overwhelmingly on Thursday to launch an inquiry into alleged serious violations committed by Russian troops in Ukraine, heaping further diplomatic pressure on Moscow.

The Russian invasion has sparked an exodus of nearly six million civilians, many of whom bear accounts of torture, sexual violence and indiscriminate destruction.

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