Satellite images show Bucha killings occurred during Russian occupation – NYT

Satellite images show Bucha killings occurred during Russian occupation – NYT

An analysis of satellite images by The New York Times rebuts claims by Russia that the killing of civilians in the town of Bucha occurred after its soldiers had left the town.

The relevant statement was made by NYT on Monday, an Ukrinform correspondent reports.

A review of videos and satellite imagery by the publication shows that many of the civilians were killed more than three weeks ago, when Russia’s military was in control of the town.

One video, filmed by a local council member on April 2, shows multiple bodies scattered along Yablonska Street in Bucha. Satellite images provided by Maxar Technologies show that at least 11 of those had been on the street since March 11, when Russia, by its own account, occupied the town.

To confirm when the bodies appeared, and when the civilians were likely killed, the NYT investigation team conducted a before-and-after analysis of satellite imagery. The images show dark objects of similar size to a human body appearing on Yablonska Street between March 9 and March 11. The objects appear in the precise positions in which the bodies were found after Ukrainian forces reclaimed Bucha, as the footage from April 2 shows. Further analysis shows that the objects remained in those positions for over three weeks.

The causes of death are unclear. Some of the bodies were beside what appears to be an impact crater. Others were near abandoned cars. Three of the bodies lay beside bicycles. Some have their hands bound behind their backs with white cloth. The bodies were scattered over more than half a mile of Yablonska Street.

A second video taken on Yablonska Street shows three more bodies. One lies beside a bicycle, another near an abandoned car. Satellite imagery shows that the abandoned cars and the nearby body appear between March 20 and 21.

These are just some of the civilian bodies discovered since Saturday. The Associated Press published images of at least six dead men lying together in the rear of an office building, some with hands tied behind their backs. The building is one mile west of the other victims found along Yablonska Street.

Another mile further along, a photographer with The Times discovered the body of a man with a gunshot wound to his head lying beside a bicycle.

Russia’s Ministry of Defense denied responsibility, claiming that the bodies had been recently placed on the streets after “all Russian units withdrew completely from Bucha”, i.e. after March 30, 2022.

Russia claimed that the images were “another hoax” and called for an emergency UN Security Council meeting on what it called “provocations of Ukrainian radicals” in Bucha.

However, Russia’s request was denied. On April 5, 2022, the United Kingdom is calling a UN Security Council meeting to discuss the mass killings of civilians in Kyiv Region, committed by Russian troops.


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