With the fighting with Russia in Ukraine ongoing, new and disturbing evidence has emerged that a mass grave of up to 10 thousand bodies exists. The full extent of what happened during Putin’s invasion is becoming clearer every day as it becomes more difficult for him to deny his actions.
He breaks down in tears midway through, saying, “Brother, we’ve been seeking for you for so long.” Dmitry, his brother, has been gone for over a week, and neighbors have speculated that he may be buried here.
“We assumed you were still alive!” Vladimir exclaims.
The victims are heaped on top of one another within the tomb, largely in black bags but with some limbs protruding. Only a few people are buried. A CNN crew discovered at least a dozen remains in the mass grave, but the dirt shows evidence of recent movement, indicating that there might be many more dead underneath.
At least 150 individuals are believed to have been buried in the mass grave, according to Kyiv Regional Police and local residents, although the mayor of Bucha claims the death toll might be as high as 300. CNN was unable to independently confirm their statements.
Vladimir takes his belongings and goes, reassured by his wife, Anna, and a neighbor, Liubov. He claims that his brother is buried there, but the sad fact is that he has no way of knowing for sure — and may not for a long time.
Residents claim that the burial, which is located behind the Church of St. Andrew and Pyervozvannoho All Saints, was excavated as early as the Russian invasion of Ukraine, due to the high death toll in this lush Kyiv neighborhood.
Maxar satellite pictures from March 10 reveal the hole has already been excavated.
As Russian soldiers withdraw from the Kyiv region, the atrocities of Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine become more apparent. The death and damage delivered by Russia’s war machine are on full show in Bucha, where corpses were first discovered on the streets of the suburb on Sunday. Hands were tied behind their backs for some.
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky has accused Russia for the deaths in the area, accusing Moscow of attempting to destroy his “whole country.”
In an appearance on CBS News’ “Face the Nation” on Sunday, he added, “This is about the annihilation and extinction of all these ethnicities.”
Russia, for its part, has denied any participation, claiming that it does not target civilians and that the photographs of dead in Bucha’s streets are phony.
The roadways within the area are strewn with wrecked Russian armored vehicles, including tanks, ambushed by Ukrainian drones or NATO-supplied hand-held rocket launchers like Javelins and Next-Generation Light Anti-Tank Weapons Systems, or NLAWs.
Before being destroyed, whole columns of Russian armored vehicles were stuck on tiny residential roadways.
“They assumed they could just drive through the streets. That they would be welcomed as if it were OK to come here, “Valery Spichek, a Ukrainian National Police officer, tells us. “Perhaps they believe it is OK to drive about looting, destroying buildings, and mocking people.”
“However, our people refused to let it,” he continues.
The trucks are already rotting where they came to a halt, proof of Moscow’s significant losses before being forced out of the Kyiv region.
Most buildings and other infrastructure in the area have been destroyed, with just a few dwellings remaining undamaged, the bulk of which are uninhabitable as a result of Russia’s onslaught against the capital.
The situation in Bucha resembles what CNN saw in other Kyiv districts including as Irpin, Myla, Hostomel, and as far north as Bordyanka.
Artillery rounds destroyed whole multistory buildings in the latter as Ukrainians and Russians fought for control of the region. Authorities worry that dead remains are buried under the debris, and that determining the true death toll is still difficult.