A court in Kiev will hear the invasion’s first war crimes trial. Vadim Shysimarin, 21, a commander of Russia’s Kantemirovskaya tank division, is accused of shooting and killing an unarmed man, 62, who was riding a bicycle in the village of Chupakhivka, Sumy. Shysimarin was ordered “to kill a civilian so he wouldn’t report them to Ukrainian defenders,” prosecutors said.
The Russian Foreign Ministry in Moscow said it should take “military-technical” steps if Helsinki applies for NATO membership, after Finland’s President, Sauli Niinistö, and Prime Minister, Sanna Marin, said it should apply “without delay” to join the military alliance. Sweden is expected to follow in a few days.
Russia could cut off gas supplies to Finland on Fridaya day after Finnish leaders said they would apply to join NATO, according to reports.
Republican Senator Rand Paul has the passage of a $40bn U.S. Senate relief bill for Ukraine. Paul demanded changes, including an inspector general to oversee its spending.
Michael Carpenter, US Ambassador to the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), said that “at least several thousand Ukrainians” have been sent to so-called “filtration centers” in Russia where they are subjected to “brutal interrogations”. Tens of thousands of others had been evacuated to Russia or Russian-controlled territory. Carpenter said one survivor said “everyone was afraid of being taken to Donetsk” where they could become victims of “further investigation or murder”.
Urgent measures to break the Russian blockade of grain exports from Ukrainian ports, including by trying to open routes through Romania and the Baltic Sea, are discussed at a three-day meeting of G7 Foreign and Agriculture Ministers in Germany. Before the war, most of Ukraine’s food — enough to feed 400 million people — was exported through the seven ports on the Black Sea.
Ukraine said it had a Russian Navy logistics ship in the Black Sea damaged and set on fire. The Vsevolod Bobrov was located near Snake Island, said Serhiy Bratchuk, a spokesman for the Odessa regional military administration in southern Ukraine. The Guardian was unable to independently verify the details and the Russian Defense Ministry did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Ukraine’s Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said “very difficult negotiations” were underway to evacuate 38 seriously injured fighters from the besieged Azovstal staal steel plant in the Ukrainian port city of Mariupol, in exchange for Russian prisoners of war. “We work step by step,” he said. “We change 38, then we move on.”
The number of people that fled Ukraine to escape the Russian invasion, has exceeded six million, That’s what the UN Refugee Agency said. Another eight million people are displaced in Ukraine.
Nearly 100 children were murdered in Ukraine in April alone but the actual numbers could be significantly higher, the United Nations Children’s Fund has said. UNICEF deputy director Omar Abdi demanded an end to the bombing of Ukrainian schools, adding that one in six UNICEF-supported schools in eastern Ukraine had been “damaged or destroyed” last week.
European Union leaders plan to review Ukraine’s membership next month, according to the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The UN Human Rights Council has passed a resolution to investigate alleged abuses by Russian troops in parts of Ukraine previously under their control, to hold those responsible to account. The resolution was passed with a strong majority, with 33 members voting in favor and two – China and Eritrea – against. There were 12 abstentions.
The UN human rights chief, Michelle Bachelet, said: 1,000 bodies have been recovered in the Ukrainian capital Kiev. the past weeks. Many of the violations it has verified since the Russian invasion could amount to war crimes, she said.