A Stand with Ukraine rally is slated for this weekend in downtown Victoria.
The rally will take place on the front steps and lawn of B.C.’s Legislature beginning at 12:30 p.m. Sunday (April 10).
Organized by the Ukrainian Canadian Congress – Victoria Branch, Ukrainian Cultural Centre of Victoria, and the University of Victoria’s Ukrainian Students’ Society, the rally encourages people to come out and rally against Russia’s actions in Ukraine.
In areas north of the capital, Kyiv, Ukrainian officials gathered evidence of Russian atrocities amid signs Moscow’s troops killed people indiscriminately before retreating.
Ukrainian authorities said the bodies of least 410 civilians were found in towns around Kyiv, victims of what Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has portrayed as a Russian campaign of murder, rape, dismemberment and torture. Some victims were apparently shot at close range or died with their hands bound.
Western officials warned that similar atrocities were likely to have taken place in other areas occupied by Russian troops. Zelenskyy accused Russian forces of trying to cover up war crimes in areas still under their control, “afraid that the global anger over what was seen in Bucha would be repeated.”
“We have information that the Russian troops have changed tactics and are trying to remove the dead people, the dead Ukrainians, from the streets and cellars of territory they occupied,” he said in a nighttime video address. “This is only an attempt to hide the evidence and nothing more.”
Russia insists its troops have committed no war crimes and alleged the Ukrainians staged the images of brutality coming out of Bucha, where piles of body bags were getting taken to a facility for identification and investigation.
However, on Thursday, the U.N. General Assembly voted to suspend Russia from the world organization’s leading human rights body over allegations of horrific rights violations by Russian soldiers in Ukraine, which the United States and Ukraine have called tantamount to war crimes.
The International Criminal Court has also opened an investigation into possible war crimes in Ukraine.
With files from the Associated Press
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