Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has accused Russian troops of gruesome atrocities in Ukraine, telling the United Nations Security Council those responsible should face war crimes charges at a Nuremberg-like tribunal.
Mr Zelenskyy, appearing via video from Ukraine on Tuesday (early Wednesday AEST), told council members civilians had been shot in the back of the head after being tortured, blown up with grenades in their apartments and crushed to death by tanks while in cars.
“They cut off limbs, cut their throats,” he said, recounting what he described as the worst atrocities since World War II.
“Women were raped and killed in front of their children. Their tongues were pulled out only because their aggressor did not hear what they wanted to hear from them.”
Likening the troops’ actions to those of Islamic State, Mr Zelenskyy said the “Russian military and those who gave them orders must be brought to justice immediately for war crimes in Ukraine.”
“Anyone who has given criminal orders and carried them out by killing our people will be brought before the tribunal which should be similar to the Nuremberg tribunals,” he said.
Over the past few days, grisly images have emerged of what appeared to be civilian massacres carried out by Russian forces on the outskirts of Kyiv before they pulled back from the capital.
Ukrainian officials said the bodies of at least 410 civilians have been found in towns around Kyiv that were recaptured from Russian forces and that a “torture chamber” was discovered in Bucha.
Mr Zelenskyy told the Security Council there was “not a single crime” that Russian troops hadn’t committed in Bucha.
“The Russian military searched for and purposefully killed anyone who served our country. They shot and killed women outside their houses when they just tried to call someone who is alive. They killed entire families, adults and children, and they tried to burn the bodies,” he said.
Associated Press journalists in the town have counted dozens of corpses in civilian clothes. Many appeared to have been shot at close range, and some had their hands bound or their flesh burned. A mass grave in a churchyard held bodies wrapped in plastic.