Фото: Официјална Твитер страница на Министерството за одбрана на Украина

A photo is going viral on social media that is deliberately manipulated and creates a wrong public opinion about the Russian invasion of Ukraine and about who is responsible for the deaths of the killed and buried in mass graves. The claim that Ukrainians are responsible for these mass graves has nothing to do with the real situation on the ground. Russian military forces are responsible for the deaths of many people that occurred even before the city was under full Russian occupation. Official data say that the Russian military forces on 1 April seized the city, but that on 28 February, began the military interventions in that city during which some of its inhabitants were evacuated, some were injured, and some of them died, writes Truthmeter.mk.

Under the syndicating agreement between Truthmeter.mk and Meta.mk, we republish the text below:

 

A Facebook post shared a photo of a mass grave found in Ukraine that claims the date of death on the graves shows the killings were not done by Russia but by Ukraine itself. This is a manipulation and incorrect information.

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Ukraine announced to the whole world that a mass grave of people who were allegedly “tortured and executed by the Russians” was found near Izium. The head of the president’s office, Yermak, cited two photographs as evidence.

It’s just bad luck: graves date of death: March 9. Let me remind you that Russian troops took control of Izium on April 1. That is, the Ukrainians were buried here even before the arrival of the Russian soldiers? Who then tortured and executed them? Are not Ukrainians to blame?

Yes, it’s uncomfortable…, the post says.

 

A mass grave inscribed with the names and surnames of the deceased along with their dates of birth and date of death was found a few days ago in the city of Izium in Ukraine.

What is being manipulated is the claim that Russia did not commit the murders, but that Ukraine is to blame. This is based on the date of death shown on the graves, which is March 9. The conclusion of the post is that the Russian military forces did not commit the murders because they took control of the city on April 1 and that the Ukrainians were buried before the arrival of the Russian soldiers. However, this is a manipulation.

What really happened and whose graves are these?

A mass grave inscribed with the names and surnames of the deceased along with their dates of birth and date of death was found a few days ago in the city of Izium in Ukraine.

What is being manipulated is the claim that Russia did not commit the murders, but that Ukraine is to blame. This is based on the date of death shown on the graves, which is March 9. The conclusion of the post is that the Russian military forces did not commit the murders because they took control of the city on April 1 and that the Ukrainians were buried before the arrival of the Russian soldiers. However, this is a manipulation.

 

What really happened and whose graves are these?

The city of Izium is part of the territory of Eastern Ukraine that was occupied during the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022. The battle began in March 2022 for control of the city of Izium due to the city’s importance as a transportation hub. The Russian military wanted to capture Izium so that its forces in the Kharkiv region could link up with their troops in the Donbas region.

On 10 September 2022, Ukrainian forces took over the city during the Ukrainian counter-offensive on Kharkiv. Local mass graves were then found with 440 corpses, representing 2 percent of the population of Izium after 6 months of Russian occupation.

Serhiy Bolvinov, the chief police investigator for the Kharkiv region, told Sky News that forensic investigations would be carried out on each body and that some of the dead were killed by artillery fire and some were killed by airstrikes.

Namely, the photo from the Facebook post, which shows graves with names, surnames and dates of birth and death are, in fact, of a family of six who died on March 9 as a result of the bombing of Russian military forces. The family consists of two girls aged six and eight, their parents and their grandparents.

After all, these graves are one of the few with names and surnames found in this city. The remaining more than 400 graves are without any markings, they only have crosses, as can be seen in this video made by journalists of Radio Free Europe.

 

 

The claim that Russian forces captured the city in April is true, but the airstrikes on the site began much earlier, so the claim that because the city was occupied in April means that the Russian military is not to blame for the death of this family, is false.

Some Russian attacks on Izium began to occur on 28 February 2022, with continued missile attacks by the Russian military beginning on 3 March. Eight civilians were killed on March 3. The next day, Russian forces advanced towards Izium and reached its northern outskirts.

Between 9 and 12 March, Amnesty International interviewed 26 residents of Izium, immediately after their evacuation to Sviatohirsk, a city in the Donetsk region.

The testimonies we collected from Izium reveal the terror experienced by the city’s civilian population, trapped in their basements with almost no food and water and under constant attack, AI said in their report published on March 16.

By March 6, the Russian military was in control of two neighborhoods of Izium and its train station.

On the evening of March 7, Russian online outlets reported that Russian forces took over Izium, a claim that was not yet officially confirmed. Between 9 and 10 March, 2,250 civilians were evacuated from Izium as Russian forces continued to slowly advance towards the city.

On April 1, the Ukrainian military confirmed that Izium was under Russian control.

All these official data say that Izium was occupied by the Russian military forces on April 1, but that the military interventions of that city began much earlier, during which some of its inhabitants were evacuated, some were injured, and some of them died.

The claim that Ukrainians are responsible for these mass graves has nothing to do with the actual situation on the ground. Russian military forces are responsible for the deaths of many people, which occurred even before the city was officially under Russian occupation.

Through a photo that is knowingly manipulated on social networks, a wrong public opinion is created and propaganda is spread about the Russian invasion of Ukraine and about who is responsible for the deaths of those who died and were buried in mass graves.