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Russian Forces Are Using Ukrainian Children As 'Human Shields' To Protect Themselves, Witnesses Claim

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Vladimir Putin and Volodymyr Zelensky

Russian atrocities continue to come to light in the aftermath of the Russian withdrawal from Northern Ukraine.

As the Russian military pulls its forces back from around Kyiv and in Northern Ukraine, civilians and corpses are being discovered in previously occupied areas that tell horrific tales of abuses of power and war crimes.

Russian soldiers reportedly used children to avoid Ukrainian attacks around Kyiv.

Ukraine’s attorney general has been seeking evidence of Russian mistreatment of civilians in the regions surrounding Kyiv and the findings so far have been disturbing, to say the least.

Reportedly, Russian troops loaded vehicles with children and used those vehicles to block tanks, so that Ukrainians would be less likely to fire upon them at the risk of injuring or killing the local children.

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There have been other reports that suggest that the Russian military was taking children explicitly hostage from local civilian populations to discourage those civilians from assisting Ukraine by giving intel or performing acts of sabotage or resistance.

Reports of the use of children as human shields for Russian armor and as hostages have come in from many of the major cities around Ukraine such as Sumy, Chernihiv, and Kyiv.

Ukraine has been investigating the many claims of mistreatment of civilians.

A spokesperson for the ministry of defense spoke about the reports of children being used by the Russian military as shields, saying, “Russian soldiers have used Ukrainian children as hostages, putting them on their trucks."

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"They’re doing it to protect their vehicles when moving. There have been cases of brutal behavior against minors been recorded, documented by a Ukrainian and international institutions, and we’d like to emphasize that information in each and every case will be given to the national criminal courts and the occupiers will be brought to justice for each and every military and war crime they commit.”

Evidence of many other atrocities committed by Russian troops is being uncovered during Russia’s “rapid retreat.”

The discovery of mass graves in Bucha and the bodies of hundreds of civilians has been the catalyst for even further national and international outrage at the Kremlin.

Even if the fighting stopped tomorrow and Russia completely halted its war on Ukraine, there is no doubt that there would be extreme enmity from the Ukrainian people toward Russia for its reprehensible actions against the Ukrainian population.

Of course, President Vladimir Putin will not stop his war on Ukraine tomorrow, the troops withdrawn from the north of Ukraine will likely be deployed elsewhere, where they will likely continue to abuse the people of Ukraine.

If you want to help the people of Ukraine, please donate to United Help Ukraine which is providing donations, food, and medical supplies to displaced Ukrainians.

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Dan O'Reilly is a writer who covers news, politics, and social justice. Follow him on Twitter.

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