Images shared on social media on Thursday appear to show a Ukrainian prisoner of war being castrated by Russian fighters.
The video was originally posted on the pro-Russian Telegram channels.
In the contents, a Russian soldier, wearing a wide-brimmed black hat, is seen approaching another figure who has his hands tied and is lying on his stomach with the back of his pants cut off. The prisoner is wearing blue and yellow patches that identify him as Ukrainian.
Former Australian General and Military Analyst Mick Ryan tweeted : “On the last day, a video showing Russian soldiers performing a heinous and repulsive act against a defenseless Ukrainian prisoner of war was circulated. While I’m not going to amplify this, I wanted to provide some thoughts.
“First, from a purely human level, I am disgusted that one human would do this to another. It is a depraved and inhuman act – there is nothing to justify it. Second, as a soldier, it breaks my heart to see a fellow soldier – now a non-combatant – being treated this way. No soldier deserves such abhorrent treatment.”
Aric Toler, head of research and training at the Bellingcat investigative agency, suggested the video appeared to be authentic and that a Russian soldier wearing the same black hat and bracelet as the man in the video had previously appeared in a clip broadcast by state-run RT.
The video provoked widespread revulsion and horror in Ukraine, with authorities in Ukraine promising to punish the criminals.
Ukrainian presidential adviser Mykhailo Podolyak tweeted : “Everyone needs to understand: Russia is a country of cannibals who enjoy torture and murder. But the fog of war will not help to avoid punishment from the executioners. We identify everyone. Let’s get them all.”
We chose not to show the video as we understand that the scenes are disturbing.