Ukraine says Russian military is looting as it redeploys east and south


On April 2, the Ukrainian General Directorate of Intelligence of the Ministry of Defense accused Russian soldiers of trying to sell personal property they had stolen from Ukrainian civilians. The accusation was posted on the management’s official Telegram channel and was also posted on Facebook.

The message, titled “The Russian army has opened a bazaar for the trade of loot”, states that “In the city of Narovlya (Belarus), the occupiers have set up a bazaar specializing in the sale of goods looted from Ukraine. The “assortment” of marauders “bazaar included: washing machines and dishwashers, refrigerators, jewelry, cars, bicycles, motorcycles, dishes, carpets, works of art, children’s toys and cosmetics. All of these things the Russians gained by marauding and robbing peaceful civilians in Ukraine.

“Currently, the occupiers are organizing the delivery of new shipments of looted ‘goods’ to their bazaar.” the post added. “From the town of Buryn [in Ukraine’s northeastern Konotop district, Sumy region] towards the national border, a convoy of delivery vehicles carries various effects – both industrial goods and household items.”

The Russian Defense Ministry did not immediately respond to Newsweek’s request for comment.

A Ukrainian serviceman stands near a destroyed Russian military vehicle in the northeastern town of Trostianets on March 29. Ukraine said on March 26 that its forces had retook the town of Trostianets, near the Russian border, one of the first towns to fall under Moscow’s control. in its month-long invasion.
Photo by FADEL SENNA/AFP via Getty Images)

No other evidence of the existence of the bazaar in Belarus has been provided. However, photographs, videos and phone intercepts lend credence to the accusation that Russian soldiers are robbing Ukrainian civilians.

Also on April 2, news aggregator Ukraine Alert published a photo of what several media outlets claim is an immobilized Russian military truck. The truck was reportedly photographed on a road in Bucha, a suburb north of kyiv recently liberated by Ukrainian forces. In the bed of the burned vehicle is what appears to be the charred remains of three washing machines.

Photograph of a burned Russian military vehicle near kyiv, Ukraine

There is also growing evidence that Russian soldiers who have managed to cross the border into Belarus are trying to send parcels of stolen goods to relatives back home.

On Saturday, Congressman Adam Kinzinger retweeted a video allegedly showing Russian soldiers in Mazyr lined up at a collection point of SDEK, a popular delivery service that operates throughout Russia and much of the former Soviet Union. .

On Sunday, independent Belarusian news site Motolko Help uploaded more than three hours of surveillance camera footage showing Russian soldiers at the SDEK site filling out paperwork and sending packages.

Russian soldiers in Belarus were filmed sending several very large packages to relatives back home

This follows Ukraine Alert’s April 1 posting of a TikTok video showing Ukrainian Territorial Defense Forces showing looted property found in an abandoned Russian armored personnel carrier. Among the items stored in the Russian military vehicle were Ukrainian currency, unopened children’s toys and frying pans.

Members of the Ukrainian Territorial Defense Battalion find looted property from an abandoned Russian armored personnel carrier

Since the early days of the conflict, Ukrainian security services have released some of the phone calls they intercepted between Russian soldiers and their relatives back home. In a representative example, a young soldier talks with a relative at home to find out when he could return.

“I stole cosmetics for you,” he told her before referring to the bags of household items he and his comrades in arms had picked up in the suburbs of kyiv.

“That will make a nice ‘hello from Ukraine,'” laughs the girl. “Which Russian doesn’t steal anything?”

Intercepted phone call from Russian soldier to relatives back home

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