German legal advisor to Ukraine finds sharp rise in Russian war crimes

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German legal advisor to Ukraine finds sharp rise in Russian war crimes

A total of around 133,000 cases of Russian war crimes in Ukraine are currently under investigation, Klaus Hoffmann, the German advisor to the Ukrainian prosecutor general, has said in remarks published on Sunday, reported dpa.

The figure was "a huge increase," Hoffmann told the Neue Osnabrücke Zeitung. "Many of them are extremely comprehensively documented," he added.

The figure is up from 56,000 cases at the end of 2022.

Hoffmann pointed to Russia aerial attacks on civilian targets and forced adoptions of Ukrainian children as examples of war crimes.

While not wishing to pre-empt a legal judgement, he expressed the personal view that the Russian actions "can only be described as terrorism against the civilian population."

Many of the alleged crimes had been documented by the Russians themselves, as the commanding officers responsible received awards for their work.

Since the Russian invasion in February 2022, Hoffmann has served as advisor to the Ukrainian prosecutor general. He is currently on secondment from the state prosecutor's office in the German state of Baden-Württemberg.

He previously worked for the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in The Hague.


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