Russian crimes near Kiev. Witness accounts [FILMY]

After entering Motyżyn at the end of March, the Russians kidnapped Olha Suchenko, the starost of Motyżyna, her husband and son. The bodies of the family, along with two other people, were found by Ukrainian soldiers right after the liberation of the village in early April. They were buried in a shallow grave. More bodies were soon discovered.

Saszko Brama and Maria Jasińska, documentalists cooperating with, collect testimonies of war crimes committed by Russian soldiers near the recently besieged capital of Ukraine. In the first conversation, they answer what they learned in Motyżyn (April 3 and 4) and show the recordings. In subsequent episodes of the series “ON THE TRACE OF RUSSIAN CRIMES” reports, incl. from Borodianka, Bucza and Irpień.

Hanna Szukalska, Before the war, you were involved in theater. Now you are documenting the Russian crimes near Kiev.

Maria Jasińska, Saszko Gate: Our goal was not to document the crime.

We just wanted to collect the stories of people who lived, but in every village and town we are faced with stories of crimes.

Maria: Kyiv is the city where I was born and where I spent most of my life. Until now, my brain cannot accept that what I am seeing is not a nightmare. Life here will never be like it was before the war.

We believe that it is necessary to talk about them, because the Russian propaganda machine works dynamically and floods the media with lies that “no civilian near Kiev has been killed.”

Maria and Saszko: We left Lviv when the Russian army and shots were still standing near Kiev. We started with Ihor, a volunteer who transports people from the fighting areas to the west. On April 3 we arrived in Motyżyn. It is a village in the Kiev region, near Makarov. The Russians were there for almost a month.

What happened in Motyżyn?

From what we have established, Russian soldiers murdered at least seven civilians in Motyżyn (we know the identity of five). They tortured and killed Olha Sucheko, her husband Time and an adult son Oleksandr. The woman was the village starost. The day before our arrival, a shallow grave was discovered in the forest.

Note, the video contains drastic shots. Maria and Saszko were at the site of the exhumation of the bodies of Olha Suchenko and her family.

The Security Service of Ukraine also lost two people in this village. Serhiy Kubuszko he was buried where the starost of Suchenko and her family were. Andriy Szostak he accidentally found a French journalist half a kilometer from this place. He had torture marks, tied hands and 16 bullet wounds.

Note, the video contains drastic shots. Maria and Saszko observed the recognition of Serhiy Kubruszko’s body.

In Motyżyn we met Oleh Bondarenko. He is a pastor of the Protestant Church of Salvation, before the war he worked in the addiction treatment center “Wosor” in Motyżyn. When the Russians found his center, they decided that it was a “terrorist” base – that was what they called the soldiers and the territorial defense of Ukraine.

Officers of the Ukrainian divorcee (intelligence) sometimes came to Motyżyn at night. They set fire to Russian equipment and then fled to the forest. The Russians believed that they were stationed in an addiction center.

When the Russian soldiers arrived, almost all the patients and staff fled through the windows. Oleh stayed.


He did not want to leave one of the charges, who did not have legs. The Russians took Oleh to their base, where they tortured the prisoners. They arranged it on the outskirts of Motyżyna in a holiday resort, such an ecological farm. They refused to believe Oleh was not a member of Territorial Defense.

They told him: yes, yes, the staroste also said that only she helps grandmothers and distributes bread, and when we started shooting her in the legs, she sang it all.

They claimed that she had given a list of members of the territorial defense before her death. Oleh also told us that they had been killed there and possibly raped before, two young women. We do not know where they were buried.

Note, the video contains a description of torture.

Oleh survived. How it’s possible?

He spent three days in that base. Young soldiers, probably Buryats, saved him [naród mongolski z południowej Syberii – red.]who figured out he was a pastor. They didn’t want him to die. They hid it in a pump pit for a well. They asked him to pray for them.

What do you know about those who killed in Motożyn?

Oleh says the commanders of the two units stationed there were soldiers with extensive military experience. One was after the Lugansk war [w Donbasie od 2014 roku — red.]. Their nicknames were “Kaluga” and “Witiebsk”. It was they who interrogated and tortured people. In addition to tormenting detainees, Russian soldiers also persecuted other villagers.

Every evening, a Russian tank went out into the field and shot at the homes of civilians. In any direction, just like that.

Every day someone was losing a home. Such violence beyond the logic of war.

Oleh heard another man being tortured and killed at a campsite set up in a recreation center – Genadia. He came from the neighboring village of Seweryniwka. He was detained after the Russians found on his phone a recording of the naked remains of a Russian soldier from a column fired at by Ukrainian forces. The film showed the penis of the deceased, and the recorder was to say that such a fate awaits the occupiers. Before our arrival, Genadi’s body was discovered in the well, next to which Oleh was previously held. Just before that, he himself was transferred to the barn.

Oleh also told us about a woman from Motyżyna, who was shot by Russian soldiers because she was dressed in black.

She was called Jaroslaw Litvinenko. The injured woman and her father, Nikolai, were taken by the Russians to the center where they interrogated the detained. They said they wanted to give her medical help there. Jarosław died. They buried her in the same forest, next to the staroste’s and her family’s grave. When we returned to Motyżyn the next day (April 4), the exhumation of the woman’s body was already underway. Jarosława with her sister and parents fled from Kiev to the countryside before the war. She thought it would be safer there.

Note, the video contains drastic shots. Maria and Saszko were at the site of the exhumation of Jarosław Litwinenko’s body.

What was the matter with the black clothes?

When Jarosław’s father later asked the Russian “why did you do this?”, He found out that they had been ordered to shoot everyone dressed in black. The Russians probably think that members of the territorial defense dress like this. This woman was 41 years old, overweight, didn’t look like a soldier.

How did Oleh know about this?

Jarosław’s father was moved to a barn, where Oleh also ended up. They both survived, and with them another prisoner from the village of Seweryniwka, Wiktor. The Russian army was withdrawing from Motożyn in chaos. They didn’t come back to this barn for them.

Hanna Szukalska
Hanna Szukalska

Architect, journalist and psychologist. He writes about spatial planning and psychology. Reports protests. He does illustrations and infographics. He coordinates the multimedia department of

Saszko Brama

Saszko Brama

Playwright and director experimenting with documentary theater. He lives in Lviv.

Maria Jasińska

Maria Jasińska

He deals with theatrical journalism, documentary and theater projects. He lives in Lviv.

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