War in Ukraine. Mass graves and anger, economic sanctions… The point of the night

The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky on Friday September 16, 2022 denounced the crimes of an army in “tortures” after the discovery of hundreds of bodies buried in a region retaken from the Russians, including people “tortured and killed”according to local authorities.

“99%” Bodies dug up in a forest outside Izium, a town in eastern Ukraine that was recaptured from the Russians last week, “shows signs of violent death”the governor of the region Oleg Synegoubov said in the evening.

“There were many bodies with their hands tied behind their backs and one person was buried with a rope around their neck. It was obvious that these people were tortured and killed”he said on Telegram.

According to him, it is in general “450 bodies of civilians with signs of brutal death and torture” who is buried in this place. “There are children too” among the bodies exhumed in the sun of “200 agents and experts” who works on the site, he added.

The President of Ukraine, in a video posted on Telegram, promised “a severe punishment” of those responsible for the alleged crimes. “Russia leaves only death and suffering. Murderers. Tortures. Deprived of all people”he added, pointing that out“There is also evidence that Russian soldiers, whose positions are not far from this place, shot the buried people just for fun”.

He also mentioned the release of Ukrainians in “seven citizens of the republic of Sri Lanka”medical students captured in March by the Russians at Izium. “They received appropriate medical care”Mr. Zelensky said without further details.

Ukrainian human rights official Dmytro Loubinets, for his part, claimed on Telegram that there “probably more than 1,000 citizens of Ukraine were tortured and killed in the liberated territories of the Kharkiv region”.

Russia is on the move “terrible way and it shows and repeats […]. We will see what he leaves behind in his wake.commented in Washington the head of American diplomacy Antony Blinken.

The EU also said “so shocked”. Same story in France: Emmanuel Macron condemned “with the greatest strength the atrocities committed in Izium, Ukraine, under Russian occupation”.

On the ground, near Izium, Ukrainian investigators began Friday to exhume bodies in a forest where 443 graves were discovered, including a pit containing the bodies of 17 Ukrainian soldiers. .

A tomb bears a cross with the inscription: “Ukrainian army, 17 people. Izioum, from the morgue”. Men dressed in white were digging in the sandy soil. “The bodies will be sent for autopsy to determine the exact cause of death”emphasized by Governor Synegoubov.

“Every death will be investigated and become evidence of Russian war crimes in international courts”he added. “The scale of the crimes committed in Izium is enormous”he reprimanded, criticized “a bloody and brutal horror”.

The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights of the United Nations immediately indicated that they would like to send a team to Izioum to “determining the circumstances of these people’s deaths”.

Germany has put Russian group Rosneft under surveillance

Rosneft’s subsidiaries in Germany, which represent 12% of the country’s oil refining capacity, are placed under “fiduciary administration” forced by the national agency that manages energy networks, announced the Ministry of the Economy.

With this caution “It’s a question of responding to risks that weigh on the security of supplies” energy in the country, the ministry said.

Subsidiaries Rosneft Germany (RDG) and the company RN Refining & Marketing (RNRM) have shares in three major refineries in the country.

The German government particularly controls the PCK refinery in Schwedt, in the east of the country, where Rosneft holds a majority share (54.2%) and supplies fuel to the capital Berlin, its airport and the entire region.

The conservatorship begins Friday and will initially be limited to six months.

In this way “We made ourselves less dependent on Russia and the decisions made there”said Chancellor Olaf Scholz in a press conference.

In a press release, Rosneft criticized a “illegal decision” and “a violation of all the basic principles of a market economy”. The Russian oil group will analyze “all possible remedies to protect shareholders, including going to court”.

Berlin took control in early April of Gazprom’s former German subsidiary, Gazprom Germania, to ensure its gas supply this season.

Prisoners of war against the continued export of ammonia

Volodymyr Zelensky said on Friday that he would only accept the continued export of ammonia to Russia through Ukraine in exchange for the release of Ukrainian prisoners of war in Russia.

In an interview with Reuters, the Ukrainian president said that he offered the arrangement to the United Nations, which advocated for the continuation of the export of ammonia to Russia through Ukraine to alleviate the lack of fertilizer in the world.

Ammonia is used to make fertilizers used in conventional agriculture.

“I am against the delivery of ammonia from the Russian Federation through our territory. I will only do this in exchange for our prisoners. This is what I propose to the UN.said Zelensky in his presidential office.

Cited by the Tass agency, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov immediately rejected this idea.

21st American Aid

After the White House announced the sending of 600 million dollars of additional military aid to the United States with a particular strengthening of artillery ammunition, the American media emphasized the expectation of the American people in a military campaign. “Open-ended with no hope of a negotiated end in sight”.

This is the 21st time that the Ministry of Defense has delivered weapons to Ukraine. This new shipment will include “counter-artillery radar, anti-drone systems and mine clearance equipment”.

During a roundtable at Stanford University led by General HR McMaster, former national security adviser under Donald Trump, the serviceman estimated that “What we are seeing around Kharkiv is the psychological breaking point of some Russian forces”.

McMaster also called for more deliveries of weapons and military equipment to Ukraine, including heavy armor and tanks requested by Kyiv.

Loss of morale among Russian troops

In the American press, the Washington post mentions the letters of Russian soldiers found after their withdrawal from towns recaptured by Ukrainian forces. The daily emphasized the loss of morale of the Russian troops due to moral and physical exhaustion and the lack of support from their command. The newspaper also devoted an article to the anti-war protests taking place in Russia.

Biden is trying to bring back Americans detained in Russia

The US president on Friday assured the families of two Americans detained in Russia, basketball star Brittney Griner and ex-serviceman Paul Whelan, that he “Continuing to explore all possible avenues” to bring them home.

Joe Biden met separately with Elizabeth Whelan, sister of Paul Whelan, and Cherelle Griner, wife of Brittney Griner. “The president is grateful for the opportunity to learn more about Brittney and Paul”said his spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre, without any details on the ongoing negotiations.

Earlier in the day, John Kirby, a spokesman for the National Security Council attached to the White House, assured that “Discussions are ongoing. »

Russia recently said they are ready to discuss a prisoner exchange for the sportswoman.

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