Mass burial sites discovered in recently liberated Ukrainian city of Izyum

The Kremlin dismisses mass burial discoveries in Ukraine as 'lies'

Image of mass burial site found near the city of Iyzum in the Kharkiv region. Credit: Twitter@AndriyYermak

A top police investigator has told Sky News about mass burial sites found in the city of Iyzum which was recently liberated from Russian occupiers.

Serhii Bolvinov, one of the Kharkiv region’s police investigators told Sky News that when Ukrainian troops liberated the city of Izyum, they discovered a mass burial site containing at least 440 graves. The bodies had all been buried individually he said.

Forensic tests will now be carried out on the bodies once they have been exhumed added Bolvinov. A major effort will be made by police officers, investigators, and prosecutors to collect evidence of further suspected war crimes by the Russian troops who previously occupied the city for several months.

“I can say that there is one of the biggest burials in one liberated city, which contains more than 440 graves. Some 440 bodies were buried in one place”, the chief investigator told Deborah Haynes from Sky News.

When quizzed about the circumstances under which the victims had died, Bolvinov replied: “We know that some were killed (shot dead), some died because of artillery fire, so-called mine explosion traumas. Some died because of airstrikes. Also, we have information that a lot of bodies have not been identified yet. So the reasons of death will be established during the investigations”.

“For me, it was especially shocking and horrific and this is a crime against humanity. It shouldn’t be like this in a civilised world in 2022. This is such a horrendous story and unpleasant from any angle. I am confident that the evil will definitely be punished”, added the police investigator, who added that other burial sites had been found in the Kharkiv region which were being examined.

Andriy Yermak, the Head of the Office of the President of Ukraine, posted on social media, accompanying an image of the burial site. He wrote: “A mass burial was found in Izyum, Kharkiv region. Necessary procedures have already begun. All bodies will be exhumed and sent for forensic examination. Expect more information tomorrow. Russia is a murderer country. A state sponsor of terrorism”.

Anton Gerashchenko, an Minister of Internal Affairs of Ukraine, commented on the discovery: “Only crosses and numbers – mass burials for victims of Russian occupation in a forest near Izyum. Commissioner for missing persons Oleh Kotenko verified that photos are real. This cannot be forgiven”.

He added that Volodymyr Tymoshko, the head of National Police in the Kharkiv region had confirmed: “There are more than 440 bodies in a burial place in one of the de-occupied towns in Kharkiv region”.


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Written by

Chris King

Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at