Ukraine has accused the Kremlin of kidnapping nearly 2,500 Ukrainian children in the Donetsk and Luhansk territories and bringing them to Russia.
In addition, the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry warned that the alleged deportations “are a serious violation, in particular, of international humanitarian law.”
According to the Ukrainian authorities, thousands of people have been taken to remote cities in Russia, where they could be forced to stay for years and work for free.
There are also allegations that Russian forces have raped women in the Ukrainian cities and towns where they arrive.
“Most of them were killed after being raped or took their own lives,” MP Lesia Vasylenko told the British Parliament, according to The Mirror newspaper.
Separately, the Pentagon on Monday accused Russian forces of committing war crimes in Ukraine and said it would help gather evidence of them, as it accused the Kremlin of carrying out indiscriminate attacks as part of an intentional strategy in the conflict.
“We certainly see clear evidence that Russian forces are committing war crimes and we are helping to collect evidence of that,” Pentagon spokesman John Kirby told a news conference.
“But there are investigation processes that are going to continue, and we are going to let that happen. We are going to contribute to this investigative process. As for what would come of that, that is not a decision that would be made by Pentagon leaders,” he added.
This Monday, the High Representative of the European Union (EU) for Foreign Affairs, Josep Borrell, affirmed that Russia is committing “many war crimes” in Ukraine and called what is happening in Mariúpol, in the southeast of the country, as a massive war crime.
“Russia is really committing a lot of war crimes, that’s the word, we have to say it. What is happening in Mariúpol is a massive war crime, destroying everything, bombing and killing everyone, indiscriminately”, Borrell told the press upon his arrival at a Council of Foreign Ministers of the EU.
“This is something horrible, we have to condemn it in the strongest terms “, he added about the situation in Mariupol, besieged by Russian troops for more than two weeks under heavy bombardment.