SBU continues to document war crimes of the Russian Armed Forces in Ukraine, for transfer to international courts – Vasyl Hrytsak
On the today’s briefing the head of the SSU Vasyl Hrytsak unveiled the materials of the investigation that prove the direct involvement of Russian soldiers in the shellings of the “Shidnyi” borough of Mariupol on January 24, 2015.
In the near future, the findings of the investigation will be forwarded to the International Court of Justice as materials supporting Ukrainian case regarding Russia’s violation of the 1999 International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism and the 1965 International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination.
As a result of this war crime, 29 citizens of Ukraine are dead, 92 – wounded, residential and non-residential property, markets have been damaged. “During the pre-trial investigation our investigators have established and proved that this terrorist act was committed by regular Russian military personnel who deployed two standard MLRS battalions of Russia’s Armed Forces,” said Vasyl Hrytsak.
From the territory of Russia, the operation was directed personally by the chief of Missile and Artillery Troops of the Southern Military District of the Russian Armed Forces, Major-General Yaroschuk Stepan Stepanovich. From the temporarily occupied Donetsk, the shellings were supervised by Colonel of Russian Armed Forces Tsaplyuk Alexander Yozhefovich, call sign “Gorets”. Actions of Russian MLRS battalions were coordinated by Lieutenant-Colonel of Russian Armed Forces Vlasov Maxim Vladimirovich, call sign “Yugra”.
SSU investigators have established direct involvement in the shellings of the units of 200th Pechenga Separate Motorized Infantry Brigade and the 2nd Guards Taman Motorized Rifle Division (formerly the 5th Guards Taman Motorized Infantry Brigade). “The hard work resulted in per-minute recording and documenting of Russian military units crossing the Russian-Ukrainian border and moving to the terrorist positions that were the source of the shelling of Mariupol,” stressed the SSU Head.
An integral part of Russian Army, two battalions of BM-21 “Grad” Multiple-Launch Rocket Systems, 120 times shelled the peaceful city with unguided S-21OF jet-propelled high-explosive rockets. “Having received the information about the OSCE mission coming to the area, Russian soldiers cowardly began to conceal the traces of the crime, hiding the equipment for its subsequent return to Russia,” said Vasyl Hrytsak.
SBU investigators documented the entire chain of regular Russian military personnel organizing, coordinating and executing this crime against the peaceful population of Ukraine. At present, 11 servicemen of the Russian Armed Forces involved in criminal deployment of MLRS, as well as their accomplices from the militants of DNR terrorist organization, have been served a notice of suspicion of committing a terrorist attack and conducting aggressive military action.
The decision to shell a peaceful city of another country is not something a military commander can decide. "It is clear that approval for this terrorist attack was given by the Russia’s top political and military leadership,” said the SSU Head. It is utterly cynical that the 2nd Guards Taman Motorized Rifle Division (formerly the 5th Guards Taman Motorized Rifle Brigade) that was shelling the Mariupol, will take part in 9 May parade in Moscow at the Red Square.
SBU Press Centre
For the Attention of the SBU Head