A Ukrainian mother wrote her contact details on her young daughter’s back so she can be reunited if they are separated during the bloody Russian war.
Sasha Makoviy shared an image of her daughter Vira with her birthday and telephone numbers written in pen on her skin.
She said in an Instagram post: “I signed Vira in case something happened to us, and someone would pick her up as a survivor.
“In the photo is Vira’s back on the first day of the war. I signed it with my hands trembling very much. But why tell you?
“You already know what it’s like to wake up to the deafening and powerful sounds of explosions that can be heard for tens of kilometers. I was shaking for the first hours like you.
“Then an even crazier thought flashed through my mind: ‘Why didn’t I tattoo her with this information?’
The post was shared Iuliia Mendel, former spokesperson for Ukraine’s president Volodymyr Zelensky.
It comes as Ukrainian authorities said on Sunday they were investigating possible crimes by Russian forces after finding hundreds of bodies scattered around towns like Bucha outside the capital Kyiv, after the Russian troops withdrew from the area.
An AFP reporter said they had seen at least 20 bodies in Bucha, while the town’s mayor, Anatoliy Fedoruk, said more than 300 residents had been killed.
The Independent’s Kim Sengupta spoke to residents who described bodies being left to rot in the street like rubbish.
Ukraine said over 100 children have been killed since Russia began its invasion in February. More than 100 pushchairs were lined up in the western city of Lviv last month to commemorate the children who have been killed since the start of the war.
The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) recorded 3,455 civilian casualties in the country: 1,417 killed and 2,038 injured since Putin’s forces began its offensive.
Meanwhile, president Joe Biden has called for Russia’s president Vladimir Putin to stand trial before international authorities as a criminal war.
“He is a war criminal,” Mr Biden told reporters on Monday. He added that his administration of him would continue adding pressure to the situation via sanctions targeting Moscow.
Western-led sanctions have been blamed for a hard economic shock in Russia that has led many businesses to close and the Ruble to lose value.
“I’m going to continue to add more sanctions,” said Mr Biden, while refusing to give specific details.
Mr Biden also addressed remarks from Mr Zelensky in which he accused Russian forces of committing “genocide” in Ukraine.
Russian forces attempted to strongly deny committing war crimes over the weekend amid a downpour of shocking images suggesting otherwise; many civilian centers across Ukraine have reported non-military targets including hospitals being struck and apparently deliberately targeted by Russia’s military.
Military experts largely agree that Russia’s invasion has stalled across the country and shifted its goals from the capture of Kyiv and overthrow of Mr Zelensky’s government to the capture of some key cities including Kharkiv.
The Independent has a proud history of campaigning for the rights of the most vulnerable, and we first ran our Refugees Welcome campaign during the war in Syria in 2015. Now, as we renew our campaign and launch this petition in the wake of the unfolding Ukrainian crisis, we are calling on the government to go further and faster to ensure help is delivered. To find out more about our Refugees Welcome campaign, click here. To sign the petition click here. If you would like to donate then please click here for our GoFundMe page.
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.