International

10 torture sites in 1 town: Russia sowed pain, fear in Izium

Items left behind sit in the deep sunless pit in a residential compound in the recently liberated town of Izium, Ukraine, Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2022. Based on accounts of survivors and police, Associated Press journalists located 10 torture sites in the town and gained access to five of them including the compound. (AP Photo/Evgeniy Maloletka)

IZIUM, Ukraine (AP) — An Associated Press investigation has found that Russian torture in the Ukrainian town of Izium was arbitrary, widespread and absolutely routine for both civilians and soldiers.

AP journalists located 10 torture sites in the town, including a deep sunless pit in a residential compound, a clammy underground jail that reeked of urine, a medical clinic, and a kindergarten.

AP also spoke to 15 survivors of Russian torture and confirmed the deaths of eight men. All but one were civilians.

The AP also found a former Ukrainian soldier who was tortured three times hiding in a monastery, and connected him with loved ones. The town has now been liberated by Ukrainian forces.