Support Us

"Fishing Rods Down" game: Ombudsman tells press about violence against POWs in Russia

Wednesday, 28 September 2022, 16:21
Fishing Rods Down game: Ombudsman tells press about violence against POWs in Russia


Russians "played" a game called "Fishing Rods Down" with captured Ukrainian defenders, physically abusing them; they did not even provide them with basic living conditions. 

Source: Dmytro Lubinets, Ombudsman / Human Rights Commissioner of the Verkhovna Rada (Ukrainian Parliament), at a briefing in the Ukraine-Ukrinform media centre on 28 September


Quote: "The places (of captivity – ed.) were not adapted to such a large number of people. It all began with the way they were captured. It is clear that there were no legal procedures (recognition of the status of a prisoner). Then they were brought to places of detention. A common practice was to pass through a formation, where they were beaten with rubber batons; and when the batons broke, they would use wooden sticks. They were often forced to keep their heads down for a long time, which is referred to as "fishing rods down"; those who violated this rule would suffer additional hits. 

Very little food and water was provided during their stay in these places. Personal hygiene products were not provided: there was never any toilet paper, soap, toothbrushes and toothpaste. They often slept just on the concrete – no mattresses or blankets were given. This is not an exception, but a common practice."

Details: Lubinets added that all the released prisoners were taken to the hospital for the first examination, and the day after that, they were taken to various medical facilities. 

"Absolutely all of them are currently undergoing medical care; then there will be a rehabilitation process and a decision will be made on whether or not to continue military service," the Ombudsman said.

Background: On 22 September, as part of a prisoner swap with the Russian occupiers, Ukraine succeeded in releasing 215 Ukrainian defenders, including 10 foreigners. Viktor Medvedchuk, the former Ukrainian MP, pro-Russian political figure and Putin’s close ally [Putin is the godfather of Medvedchuk’s daughter – ed.], returned to Russia, along with 55 Russian military servicemen.

Journalists fight on their own frontline. Support Ukrainska Pravda or become our patron!