Mariupol Became a City of Torture: Resident of Donbass About Humiliation Endured During UAF Captivity

Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard


Those residents of Donbass who managed to survive after all the humiliation and torture, simply don’t believe that this hell is over, and that they are free.

The atrocities of volunteer battalions in Donbass have been spoken about for a long time, including in the Ukrainian media, against some of the punishers in Ukraine criminal cases for atrocities in Donbass were opened, but not one word about the UAF, for the same reason. And all this is because volunteer battalions are bloodthirsty and greedy for money, “volunteers”, they came by themselves in the so-called ATO zone, they volunteered by themselves to kill civilians, while it is the state who encourages service in the UAF, therefore, it is them who are responsible for everything that ATO soldiers commit there.

And, it turned out that they are committing it not only in Donbass, but throughout Ukraine, where units of the UAF are deployed. And it is the “valiant” SBU that covers them, whose staff also like to beat out confessions from people through torture and humiliation.


On the Internet, archives were made public of the testimonies of militiamen who were in Ukrainian captivity, including in the dungeons of the SBU. The stories of the defenders of Donbass, despite the fact that they were captured by the UAF or punisher nationalist battalions in different cities, are very similar — fascists and nationalists cruelly mocked people.

“I was guarding one of the outposts in the DPR. I was detained by the Donetsk Office for combatting organised crime in the city of Mariupol, where I previously lived. After this I was transferred to detention facility No. 7 in Kamensk. Then I was transferred to the SBU. There I was interrogated, beaten on the stomach. I had to have surgery. Then I was exchanged,” said the injured militiaman Vyacheslav.

As was told by one more inhabitant of Donbass who was in captivity – Vladimir, he was left disabled after being tortured in the dungeons of the SBU.

“I became a Ukrainian prisoner on 11/11/2014 in the village of Slavnoye, near the checkpoint of the “Oplot” brigade. I was transferred by the UAF to Selydovo. There I received medical treatment, and some special services watched me. For people like me in the hospital, I can say there is no service. For them, there is food and medicine.

Then I was transported to Mariupol, and delivered to the department of the SBU. There I was interrogated with the participation of “Azov”. They tortured me to get confessions. And they performed the torture like true fascists: put a bag over my head, beat on broken legs, on unhealed wounds, was put in the “Lastochka” position and was beaten on the back, the ribs and kidneys,” said Vladimir, who was in captivity in Ukraine.

Volunteers who arrived in Donbass to protect the civilian population also had to go through all the circles of hell of Ukrainian captivity. Moreover, it was not only to experience bullying and torture, but to also experience the death of a comrade, who was shot right in front of his eyes.

“I arrived in the Donetsk People’s Republic to assist the militia. Having ran into an ambush, I was taken prisoner. Already on the way, a Ukrainian reconnaissance group started to beat me on the head in the car with the butt of their pistols on the head while I was taped,” he said.

“On the way they stopped the car, and took me out to shoot me. But apparently their plans changed. They brought me to their location in Debaltsevo, where they placed me and my driver in two cells. Nearby was a unit of “Azov”. In the night camera they opened the cells and started to beat us. The driver snapped and tried to defend himself, and they shot him for this. Then I was moved to Kramatorsk, where the torture continued,” added the victim.

Thus, we see that the cruelty of the military personnel of the Ukrainian Armed forces, punishers from volunteer battalions, and SBU power agents knows no bounds. Crimes of the Ukrainian military in Donbass are mass premeditated in nature, it is not episodic military excesses, this is a system. While nobody knows the exact number of victims, it is clear that there are thousands of people who were subjected to illegal imprisonment, robbery, beatings, torture, rape, and moral and physical humiliation.

As a reminder, earlier the head of the delegation of the Donetsk People’s Republic in peace negotiations in Minsk Denis Pushilin spoke about the impossibility of holding an exchange of prisoners between Kiev and the LDPR in the near future with the formula “all for all”.

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