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Ukraine identifies PoW killed by Russians as Oleksandr Igorevich Matsievskyi

Ukraine’s security services have concluded that the prisoner of war killed by Russian soldiers in a clip that spread quickly across Ukraine and much of the world is Oleksandr Igorevich Matsievskyi, bringing an end to the dispute over his identity.

In the graphic 12-second clip that first circulated on Telegram last Monday, a detained combatant is seen standing in a shallow trench smoking a cigarette. The soldier, in uniform with a Ukrainian flag insignia on his arm, says “Glory to Ukraine” and is then apparently shot with automatic weapons by a group of Russian soldiers.

The video, allegedly posted to Telegram by Russian soldiers, has led to a war crimes investigation and, within Ukraine, a search for the identity of a man hailed as a national hero and symbol of resistance.

The Ukrainian military on Tuesday initially named the soldier as Tymofiy Shadura of the 30th Separate Mechanized Brigade but cautioned a final confirmation could not be made until the body had been recovered from currently Russian-controlled territory.

According to the 30th Separate Mechanized Brigade, he went missing on 3 February near Bakhmut, where fierce trench warfare had raged for seven months, with thousands killed.

Some Ukrainian media and bloggers, however, instead claimed the murdered man was Oleksandr Igorevich Matsievskyi, 42, who was also deployed to Bakhmut in November.

“We have received the conclusion of a forensic photo examination, which confirmed that the soldier in the video is Oleksandr Matsievskyi,” the Security Service of Ukraine wrote on Twitter on Sunday. “This is the result of a series of investigative actions, which included communication with relatives and relatives of the deceased, as well as the processing of photos and video materials. This man is a real hero who, even facing death, demonstrated to the whole world what Ukrainian character and indomitability are.”

Later on Sunday, Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, wrote on Twitter that he had awarded Matsievskyi the title of “hero of Ukraine”.

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“A soldier and a man who will be remembered forever. For his bravery, for his confidence – in Ukraine – and for his ‘Glory to Ukraine!’,” Zelenskiy said,


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