- Ukrainian security services intercepted a phone call between a Russian soldier and his wife.
- The woman can be heard in the appeal allowing her husband to rape Ukrainian women, RFE/RL reported.
- There are a growing number of allegations of Ukrainian women being raped by Russian soldiers.
Ukrainian security services have intercepted a phone call between a Russian soldier and his wife in which he can be heard granting him permission to rape Ukrainian women, according to an investigation by RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty (RFE/RL).
Ukraine’s Security Service (SSU) said it intercepted the call between the couple in their twenties earlier this month in Ukraine’s Kherson region, RFE/RL reported.
In an excerpt from the call, broadcast by the SSU and analyzed by RFE/RL, a woman is heard giving her husband the green light to commit a war crime.
He can be heard saying, “You go there, you rape Ukrainian women, and you don’t tell me anything. Understand?”
Later in the conversation, she can then be heard laughing before the man – a Russian soldier – asks for her explicit permission to rape women.
“Yes, I do,” the woman replies, according to the audio clip. “Just use contraception!” said the mother of one.
RFE/RL identified call participants by linking social media accounts to phone numbers provided by SSU. The soldier denied being the person on the phone, but according to RFE/RL, his voice and that of his wife matched those heard in the audio recordings, RFE/RL said.
The soldier was not charged with rape and no charges were brought against the couple, RFE/RL said.
When the wife was contacted by an RFE/RL reporter, she said her husband had been injured and was in a hospital in Sevastopol, Crimea, the port of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet. She would not answer any further questions, RFE/RL said.
The outlet noted that the couple, who moved to annexed Crimea in 2018, may have joked during the call, but it comes amid a wave of allegations from Ukrainian women that they were raped.
About 25 girls and women aged between 14 and 24 were systematically raped during the occupation of the basement of a house in Bucha, according to Ukraine’s human rights ombudsman, according to BBC News.
A 31-year-old woman from Malaya Rohan, a village in the Kharkiv region, said she was repeatedly raped at gunpoint by a soldier who entered the school where her family had taken refuge, according to the international NGO Human Rights Watch.
Another woman, 33, told The Times she was raped after Russian soldiers killed her husband.
Kira Rudyk, a Ukrainian lawmaker, told CBS News that rape “is happening systematically” in Russian-occupied areas.