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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

“Torture Chambers”: Russian forces accused of ‘Sexually torturing’ Ukrainian detainees


A legal team comprising Human Rights lawyers has exposed shocking details of the cruel treatment suffered by Ukrainian detainees in Russian ‘torture chambers’ in southern Ukraine.

Global Rights Compliance, a prominent law firm, has revealed that nearly half of those imprisoned in Kherson’s notorious chambers endured severe abuses, including rape, suffocation, waterboarding, and brutal beatings.

Evidence collected from over 35 detention centers has laid bare the extent of the sexual crimes committed by Russian troops. Disturbing tactics such as genital electrocutions and rape using foreign objects covered in condoms were among the methods employed.

Anna Mykytenko, a senior legal adviser at the firm, emphasized that these atrocities were part of a systematic plan aimed not only at degrading and humiliating prisoners but also eradicating Ukrainian identity.

Mykytenko stressed that sexual violence had been indiscriminately inflicted upon Ukrainians from all walks of life, underscoring the Russian forces’ blatant disregard for international law on Ukrainian soil.

She expressed deep concern about the enduring psychological trauma that survivors of these heinous acts would carry, acknowledging the uphill battle towards achieving justice.

Mykytenko stated that the process of identifying the culprits was already in motion, and the commitment to holding them accountable for their crimes remained steadfast.

In April 2022, Global Rights Compliance established the Mobile Justice Team, comprising prosecutors, lawyers, and analysts, with the mission of investigating and prosecuting war crimes in Ukraine.

Since the liberation of a significant part of the Kherson Oblast in October, the team has actively pursued 320 detention cases.

Startling figures disclosed that a minimum of 43% of victims reported enduring sexual violence at the hands of their Russian captors.

Certain detainees in Russian torture chambers recounted harrowing experiences of genital electrocution during interrogations, while others faced chilling threats of genital mutilation.

Detainees were coerced into memorizing and reciting pro-Russian slogans, poems, and songs, with tally marks on the walls documenting the duration of their captivity.

Co-founder of the legal firm, Wayne Jordash KC, commented that the tactics of torture and sexual violence suggest a deliberate plan to humiliate and instill terror in Ukrainian citizens, raising the specter of genocide.

In a recent tragic incident, 16-year-olds Tihran Ohannisian and Mykyta Khananov gained national recognition as a video of their final moments went viral. Allegedly tortured by Russian officials, they later lost their lives in a firefight.

In 2008, Resolution 1820 of the U.N. Security Council acknowledged that acts of sexual violence, including rape, could amount to war crimes, crimes against humanity, or be considered as part of genocide.

(Note: a report based on inputs from various news agencies)

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