Russia ‘using stolen western weapons in Ukraine to get away with war crimes’

Ukrainian officials have accused Vladimir Putin's Russian forces of using Western weapons to commit and cover-up atrocities in during the Kremlin's "special operation".

The Telegraph reported that investigators are looking at evidence that suggests Russian forces could have used the underhand tactic in an attempt to cover-up suspected war crimes.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has called for a Nuremberg-style court to hold Moscow to account.

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Ukraine on Thursday also proposed a parliamentary commission to track weapons received from Kyiv’s foreign allies.

Andriy Yermak, head of the Ukrainian president’s office, acknowledged Western concerns that weapons they had supplied could fall into enemy hands.

“All received Western weapons are registered and sent to the front. Everything is clearly controlled and now this process will become even more open,” he said.

Britain already has arrangements in place to track its weapons after they arrive in Ukraine.

“We conduct a rigorous assessment of the risks associated with providing defensive capabilities to Ukraine and ensure an End-User Agreement is signed by the Armed Forces of Ukraine upon receipt of lethal aid,” a Ministry of Defence spokesman said.

Vladimir Putin has previously backed plans to send seized weapons to pro-Russian separatists in the Donbas region.

A source told the Telegraph that efforts to track weapons provided by the West had been “stepped up” to ensure that they were not later used to commit atrocities.

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The warning came as officials said some 23,000 war crimes were now being investigated.

At a conference in The Hague, Netherlands, 45 countries on Thursday vowed to work together to support Kyiv in bringing Russian forces in Ukraine to justice.

The conference came just after Russian forces launched a deadly strike in the central Ukrainian city of Vinnytsia.

Three children were among at least 23 civilians killed when three Kalibr cruise missiles, fired from a submarine in the Black Sea, smashed into the centre of the city, far from the front-line.

Mr Zelensky told his audience: “This is an audacious act of Russian terror. People couldn’t do that. They are beasts.

“Millions were deported to Russia or made homeless by hostilities.

“It is still being established how many children Russian forces abducted and took out of Ukraine … the preliminary figure is dreadful – about 200,000 children.”

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