The head of a Ukrainian village posted one last defiant message on Facebook before she was allegedly arrested and killed by Russian forces.
Olga Sucheko was reportedly “kidnapped” by Moscow’s troops before her body was found in a pit alongside those of her husband and son.
They were apparently taken from their home in Motyzhyn, 50km west of Kyiv, before being killed and their bodies dumped in a forest.
Olga was the village’s equivalent of mayor, while her 25-year-old son Oleksandr was an award-winning soccer player. Her husband Igor was also a prominent figure in the community.
Olga is said to have refused to cooperate with the occupiers before their bodies were found on Saturday and photographed partially covered with sand.
In a recent post on her Facebook page, Olga wrote: “Dear residents, we have someone else’s scum in our village.
‘Be careful. Don’t leave your houses. Stay calm.’
The 50-year-old posted the photo on February 27, the third day of the unprovoked Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Back then, Moscow’s troops, including paratroopers and special forces, met stiff resistance from Ukrainian defenders as they attempted to advance on the capital from the north and west.
Olga had stayed in the village after it was occupied by the invaders to help others, according to reports on Ukrainian social media channels, although she was able to leave.
A desperate call for information about the trio was posted on social media a fortnight before their bodies were found.
Daria Belenitsyna said on Facebook they were taken away by Russian troops, who are said to have stolen Oleksandr’s car when they impounded the family on March 23.
She wrote: “This is my second family, they helped people to the end, carried medicine and food. They were fetched from their own house.’
The Suchekos were said to have been “tortured and murdered” by the intruders, an adviser to Ukraine’s Interior Ministry told Reuters.
Anton Herashchenko said: “The occupiers suspected that they were collaborating with our military and giving us locations to aim our artillery at.
“These scum tortured, slaughtered and killed the whole family. You will be held responsible.’
The bodies, which AP journalists said were bound and blindfolded, were found as Ukrainian personnel cleared the area after Russian forces pulled out of towns north of Kyiv.
A fourth body lying in the sand nearby – believed to be a volunteer soldier – has not been identified.
Photos showed three of the bodies lying uncovered on the ground, with another in an open sewer pipe.
Deputy Prime Minister of Ukraine Iryna Vereshchuk further confirmed that the village head was killed while being held by Russian troops.
Reuters could not immediately verify who was responsible for the killings.
Olga was the starosta of the village of around 1,010 inhabitants and thus the equivalent of a mayor or council chairwoman.
According to a Ukrainian news and media outlet, she and her husband were arrested after a house search.
Russian troops apparently promised Oleksandr they would be brought back alive, but “after some time” he too was kidnapped, TRS Boryspil said.
In a post on Facebook, the broadcaster said they were “tortured and killed by the Russians” before being thrown into the shallow grave.
The Kyiv-Svyatoshinsky Football Union called the family “exemplary” and said: “They desperately defended their native village when the hour of need came and died like heroes.”
Igor was described as a “knowledgeable entrepreneur” and co-president of rural football club Kolos, who had been committed to the development of young players.
The Facebook post goes on to say that Oleksandr helped many people flee the village while it was occupied by Russian forces, whose withdrawal from the population focuses on the approach to Kyiv last week, leaving behind evidence of horrific war crimes Has.
According to the association, the family was the victim of a “violent kidnapping” before her death.
Mounting evidence of war crimes has led to calls for Vladimir Putin to be tried before the International Criminal Court.
According to Ukrainian authorities, hundreds of bodies were found in towns and villages around Kyiv.
Many were discovered with their hands tied behind their backs and gunshot wounds.
Cases of alleged war crimes by Russian forces documented by Human Rights Watch include two incidents in which civilians were arrested and shot dead, and another in which a woman was raped with a knife point.
Moscow has denied violating international laws, saying reports of civilian deaths are fabrications designed to slander Russia.
Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov dismissed reports of atrocities in the city of Bucha, including images of dead civilians with their hands tied behind their backs, as “staged provocations”.
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https://metro.co.uk/2022/04/05/we-have-scum-in-our-village-final-post-from-murdered-ukrainian-mayor-16409738/ "We have scum in our village" Last post of murdered Ukrainian mayor