In Kharkiv and Kharkiv region, 760 civilians have been killed and more than 1,000 injured in persistent attacks by Russian troops.
That’s according to the Ukrainian Prosecutor General’s Office, Ukrinform reports.
Prosecutor General Iryna Venediktova and Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court Karim Khan inspected the sites of Russia’s war crimes in Kharkiv and discussed joint steps in the strategy of prosecution and justice.
“Prosecutor Khan carefully examines all crime scenes, asking our prosecutors important professional questions. On the front of justice, we are side by side with him: in an independent investigation by the ICC Prosecutor’s Office, the Ukrainian prosecutors are actively assisting The Hague,” Venediktova said.
At the same time, according to the top prosecutor, there is cooperation within the Joint Investigation Team within the Eurojust platform, which the Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court joined for the first time in its history.
During his third visit to Ukraine, the ICC prosecutor visited Kharkiv’s most affected district, Pivnichna Saltivka, as well as the Shevchenkivskyi district, where nine were killed and 17 injured on May 26.
According to the PGO, the Russians were firing on the territory of the district for almost two hours, possibly using the Pion self-propelled guns. Among those killed was a five-month-old infant.
“The sites where the victims lay are still marked with yellow flags, and the paving slabs are smashed to pieces. There are no military facilities in the peaceful North Saltivka district, and almost every second household is evidence of a war crime. The historic buildings in the center are now monuments to the days of Russian barbarism of the 21st century,” she said.
According to the PGO, as a result of persistent attacks on Kharkiv and across region, more than 4,000 buildings were destroyed, of which almost 2,500 were apartment blocks.
Prosecutors are gathering evidence and testimony to step up the inquiry into war crimes. The first verdicts have already been handed down to the Russian servicemen who had fired artillery on civilian infrastructure.
Due to changes in legislation, the ICC has the necessary procedural tools to work ‘on the ground.’ The next step is to open their representative office in Ukraine. The task of our law enforcement system today is to provide all the opportunities for our colleagues to work objectively, independently, and quickly. The synergy of national and international justice is our key to justice,” Venediktova added.
As Ukrinform reported earlier, since the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine, law enforcement have registered more than 17,500 crimes of aggression and war crimes.