A Russian soldier who defected to the from President Vladimir Putin's invading army has claimed that his former comrades seemed to have “Rambo Syndrome” as they raped and pillaged in Ukraine.
Nikita Chibrin, 27, is currently applying for political asylum in Spain.
He served under the commander Azatbek Omurbekov whose troops were accused of massacres and raping of women and girls around Bucha.
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Mass graves, showing evidence of the group's alleged war crimes shocked the watching world early on into the invasion of Ukraine.
And now Chibrin, who has claimed he is willing to testify against Russia in an international war crimes court, has shed more light on what happened.
He said, speaking to local news outlets: “They went crazy – they said, we have the power, we have the tanks, we have infantry fighting vehicles, weapons and so on.
“‘Rambo Syndrome’ was on.
“They stole household decorations and mobile devices (and) many found alcohol in Ukrainian houses and drank.
“There was a case in Andriivka when a mother and daughter were raped – four men did it.”
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He denied that the sexual violence had the approval of the soldiers’ immediate superiors yet said that troops seen as against Putin’s invasion were in constant fear of physical and psychological pressure.
He blamed the Russian barbarity on the poor conditions and bullying.
“One rapist ran away, and the rest were beaten by fellow soldiers and commanders using stools,” he said.
“They wanted to shoot them – they could not be charged because there was no evidence, so they were simply dismissed from the army.
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“People had not been in the normal world for a long time.
“They did not have normal conditions.”
Chibrin claims that he escaped as a stowaway in a food truck after pretending to go crazy while serving on the front line.
He reached Madrid on November 15 and has applied for asylum.
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