“Vor ask representatives of these organizations to join the inspection of the site” in the Russian region of Belgorod, said the Ukrainian Commissioner for Human Rights, Dmytro Lubinets, quoted by the French agency AFP.
Lubinets said he contacted the United Nations and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) to find out if they were aware of a prisoner transfer through Russia on Wednesday.
He said that a legally clear reaction from Ukraine will show that the State does not violate the Geneva Convention and treats prisoners of war and citizens on the territory with dignity.
“Even if they are Russians,” he added, quoted by the state agency Ukrinform.
Despite the request to international institutions, Lubinets admitted that he was convinced that “no one will be allowed to see the site”.
The military transport plane, an Ilyushin Il-76, crashed on Wednesday in the Belgorod region, close to the Ukrainian border, killing all 74 people on board.
Moscow said that in addition to six crew members and three Russian military personnel, the plane was carrying 65 Russian soldiers for a prisoner of war exchange.
Russia accused Ukraine of having shot down the plane with two missiles fired from the northeast region of Kharkiv, which borders Belgorod.
Ukraine admitted that a prisoner exchange was planned for Wednesday, which did not take place, but said it did not have “reliable and complete information” about the plane’s passengers.
Ukrainian military sources cited by Ukrinform said the plane was carrying missiles for the S-300 anti-aircraft systems used to bomb Ukraine.
Russian emergency services said the plane’s black boxes had been recovered and would be sent to the Defense Ministry in Moscow for decryption.
Ukraine today announced the opening of a criminal investigation into the plane crash in Belgorod, which is often the target of attacks by Ukrainian forces.
“As for the international investigation, I believe that we, on our side, will do everything to make it happen. We will turn to the international community, offer various options, involve experts, including international and Ukrainian ones,” said Dmytro Lubinets.
The Ukrainian Commissioner for Human Rights said he feared that Moscow would treat the incident as the case of the alleged massacre of dozens of Ukrainian prisoners in the Olenivka penal colony in Donetsk in July 2022.
“The Russians will make their own statements, they will not admit anyone, they will not hand over any material for analysis and they will limit themselves to accusing Ukraine of allegedly violating something,” he said.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky called for an international investigation.
“It is obvious that the Russians are playing with the lives of Ukrainian prisoners, with the feelings of their families and with the emotions of our society,” he said, quoted by AFP.
Moscow called an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council, which was scheduled for 10pm today (Lisbon time).
Read Also: Kyiv opens criminal investigation into Russian military plane crash
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