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Press Freedom Group Says Ukraine Journalist, Soldier ‘Coldly Executed’


Press Freedom Group Says Ukraine Journalist, Soldier ‘Coldly Executed’

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — A Ukrainian photojournalist and a soldier who was accompanying him after they have been killed in the first weeks of Russia’s invasion seem to have been “coldly executed” as they have been looking out Russian-occupied woodlands for the photographer’s lacking image-taking drone, Reporters With out Borders mentioned Wednesday, citing its findings from an investigation into their deaths.

The press freedom group mentioned it went again to the spot the place the our bodies of Maks Levin and serviceman Oleksiy Chernyshov have been discovered April 1 in woods north of the capital, Kyiv. The group mentioned it counted 14 bullet holes within the burned hulk of their automotive nonetheless on the scene.

The group mentioned disused Russian positions, considered one of them nonetheless bobby-trapped, have been discovered shut by. Additionally discovered have been the stays of meals rations, cigarette packets and different litter seemingly left by Russian troopers.

A few of Levin and Chernyshov’s belongings, together with the soldier’s ID papers and elements of his bulletproof vest and the photographer’s helmet, have been additionally recovered, it mentioned.

A Ukrainian crew with steel detectors additionally uncovered a bullet buried within the soil the place Levin’s physique had lain, it mentioned. The group mentioned that discovering suggests “he was in all probability killed with one, maybe two bullets fired at shut vary when he was already on the bottom.”

A jerrycan for gasoline was additionally discovered near the place Chernyshov’s burned physique had been recovered, it added.

Reporters With out Borders mentioned its findings “present that the 2 males have been likely coldly executed.”

Levin and Chernyshov have been final heard from on March 13. A GPS tracker of their automobile gave their final place, in woods north of Kyiv, the group mentioned.

It mentioned Levin had misplaced his drone within the space on March 10 and hadn’t been in a position to recuperate it as a result of he’d come below Russian hearth. Drones have turn out to be a standard device for photojournalists to get aerial pictures and video.

Reporters With out Borders mentioned Levin had every now and then shared info gleaned from his drone, together with about Russian positions, with Ukrainian forces.

“However using his drone was at first a journalistic endeavor, confirmed by his entourage and proven by the photographs offered to the media for the reason that begin of the Russian invasion,” it mentioned.

The group speculated that Levin might have been trying to find his drone when he and Chernyshov have been killed.

The group mentioned it turned over proof it collected and dozens of pictures to Ukrainian investigators.

The group mentioned it was unable to substantiate whether or not the boys’s our bodies have been autopsied — a step it referred to as important for the investigation into their deaths.

It additionally appealed for Ukrainian protection and intelligence businesses to supply investigators with no matter info they’ve about Russian items that had occupied the realm throughout Moscow’s failed assault on Kyiv within the preliminary levels of the four-month battle.

Observe the AP’s protection of the battle at

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