A Russian soldier accused of war crimes on Thursday (May 19th) has apologized in court to the widow of a man he is accused of killing in cold blood.
Vadim Shishimarin, a 21-year-old Russian tank commander, is accused of killing a 62-year-old unarmed civilian in the village of Chupakhivka in northeastern Ukraine in a trial that is of great symbolic importance to Kyiv. on February 28, according to Reuters.
On Wednesday (May 18th) he pleaded guilty and could be sentenced to life in prison if found guilty.
Asked by the widow of the deceased if he had repented, he said, “Yes, I admit my guilt. I understand that you will not be able to forgive me, I apologize for everything I have done. “
Ukraine has accused Russia of atrocities and brutality against civilians during the invasion and said it has identified more than 10,000 possible war crimes.
Russia has denied targeting civilians or involved in war crimes, and has accused Kiev of organizing them to defame its forces.
This Russian soldier, accused of war crimes, apologized, but he had four other Russian soldiers as accomplices.
Ukrainian prosecutors say Shishimarin and four other Russian soldiers fired and stole a private car to escape after their column was targeted by Ukrainian forces.
Russian soldiers drove to the village of Chupakhivka, where they saw an unarmed man riding a bicycle and talking on the phone, they said.
They said Shishimarin had been ordered by another military man to kill the civilian to prevent him from reporting the presence of the Russians, and fired several shots through the open window of the car with an assault rifle at the civilian’s head, killing him on the spot.
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