According to information from the Chief Directorate of Intelligence of the Ministry of Defence of Ukraine, some circumstances of the premeditated murder of Ukrainian prisoners of war in a penal facility in Olenivka village (Donetsk region), where the Ukrainian prisoners of war were held, including the Azov Regiment members, have been established.
POWs were interrogated by investigators of the so-called “Ministry of State Security of the Donetsk People’s Republic” together with representatives of Wagner PMC and FSB of the Russian Federation. Physical torture and beatings were actively used during interrogations. Such measures, first of all, were aimed not at obtaining certain confidential information but at bullying, physically humiliating, and demoralising to break the moral and psychological qualities of Ukrainian soldiers. If this plan had been implemented, the FSB representatives would have involved Ukrainian prisoners in the filming of pro-Russian news reports. The purpose of the reports was to highlight the prisoners’ recognition of “crimes committed by them, atrocities against the local population, the fighters’ renunciation of their views, as well as condemnation of the actions of the leadership of Ukraine.”
Interrogations were conducted regularly but were unsuccessful. Ukrainian POWs showed exceptional courage and indomitable willpower.
“The Russian side had no intention of exchanging prisoners of war and, to hide the improper conditions and forms of interrogation of Ukrainian service members (which could serve as an evidence base at the Hague tribunal), deliberately killed the POWs. According to available data, the detention facility with the Ukrainian soldiers was mined by the Wagner PMC fighters using a highly flammable substance, which led to the rapid spread of the fire across the premises,” the Chief Directorate of Intelligence noted.