The body of missing Ukrainian mayor and her family were discovered in a shallow grave, Ukrainian officials say.
The Washington Examiner reported that “Olga Sukhenko, mayor of the suburb of Motyzhyn outside of Kyiv, was initially kidnapped by Russian forces alongside her husband and son on March 23.”
Anton Herashchenko, a Ukrainian interior ministry adviser, said Russians “tortured and murdered the whole family of the village head.”
“The occupiers suspected they were collaborating with our military, giving us locations of where to target our artillery,” Herashchenko added. “These scum tortured, slaughtered, and killed the whole family.”
A Reuters reported reportedly “saw the bodies in the shallow grave in a forest near a farm,” the New York Post reported. The outlet added that one of the bodies “had his head taped.”
“A fourth body — an unidentified man who appeared to have been tied up — was seen in a well near the burned-out farm, where black burn marks climbed up its few remaining walls, the Reuters reporter said,” the Post reported.
Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk confirmed the murder of Sukhenko and her family, saying she was one of 11 mayors and community leaders who had been taken captive by Russia throughout the ongoing war.
The news comes as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky traveled to Bucha, Ukraine, and described seeing “genocide” and “war crimes,” The Daily Wire previously reported.
“Dead people have been found in barrels, basements, strangled, tortured,” Zelensky said, according to the Associated Press.
“These are war crimes, and they will be recognized by the world as genocide. You are here today and can see what happened. We know of thousands of people killed and tortured, with severed limbs, raped women, murdered children. I think it is more than — this is a genocide,” Zelensky said on Monday, according to ABC News.
Satellite images of mass graves have been released in the past month, including one image on Monday that showed a 45-foot-long trench.
“On Monday, satellite images emerged of a 45-foot-long trench dug into the grounds of a Ukrainian church where a mass grave was found about 20 miles from Motyzhyn in the Kyiv suburb Bucha, where shocking scenes emerged of bodies left in the street,” the Post reported. Russia has claimed the images are propaganda.
Reuters journalists reported seeing a mass grave at a church in Bucha, with hands and feet visible through the red clay used to bury them.
Numerous world leaders have called out the atrocities, including President Joe Biden.
“One comment to make before I start the day,” Biden said on Monday. “You may remember I got criticized for calling Putin a war criminal. Well, the truth of the matter, you saw what happened in Bucha. This warrants — he is a war criminal. But we have to gather the information. We have to continue to provide Ukraine with the weapons they need to continue to fight, and we have to gather all the details so this can be an actual, have a war crime trial.”
French President Emmanuel Macron also said there was “clear evidence of war crimes” in Bucha that he favored “a new round of sanctions and in particular on coal and gasoline.”
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