During the occupation of Kherson, Russian soldiers dumped the bodies of their dead comrades at a local landfill and burned them there, The Guardian reports citing local residents and workers.
According to the newspaper's sources, in the summer, near the end of the occupation, the military made the landfill a restricted area and closed it off from prying eyes. Residents said they saw Russian open trucks carrying black body bags, which were then dumped and set on fire, filling the air with thick acrid smoke and the smell of burning flesh.
“Every time our army shelled the Russians there, they would take the remains to a landfill and burn them,” said Irina, a 40-year-old resident of Kherson.
In late June, Ukraine was actively fighting to retake the city and Kyiv used rockets to seriously damage the bridges across the Dnipro River, destroy Russian ammunition depots and strike at enemy artillery and manpower, the newspaper notes. Around the same time, according to the residents, the military started using the landfill.
The article says it is impossible to independently verify the local residents' claims, and the Ukrainian authorities have declined to say whether the allegations are being investigated. The Guardian journalists visited the landfill located in the northwestern part of the city five days after Kherson was liberated and spoke with landfill workers and several city residents who confirmed the claims made by other residents in the summer .
“The Russians brought a Kamaz truck full of garbage and corpses and unloaded everything all at once,” said a garbage collector from Kherson, who asked not to be named. “Do you think anyone was going to bury them? They dumped them and then threw garbage on top of them, that's all.”
He said he didn't see if the bodies were military or civilian, “I didn't see. I've said enough. I'm not scared, I've been fighting since 2014. I’ve been to Donbass.”