Taoiseach dismisses claims by Russian ambassador that images of war crimes were staged as “preposterous” 4 months ago

Taoiseach dismisses claims by Russian ambassador that images of war crimes were staged as “preposterous”

Martin spoke about receiving information surrounding "the barbaric nature of this war".

Micheál Martin has dismissed claims by the Russian ambassador that images of war crimes in Buch are staged as "preposterous".

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The Taoiseach discussed Yury Filatov's claims outside Leinster House on Tuesday (5 April).

"I think it's a preposterous position that the Russian ambassador has put forward and indeed the Russian Federation is putting forward," Martin said.

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"We are increasingly hearing of accounts from independent observers in relation to the barbaric nature of this war and particularly, the indiscriminate murder of civilians.

"International media and those media outlets from reputable organisations that are in Ukraine are bearing witness to this and conveying this back to us," he added.

The Russian Embassy in Ireland released a statement on Monday (4 April) denying that horrendous images from the Ukrainian city of Bucha were real.

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"The Russian Federation categorically rejects any allegations of the Russian Armed Forces involvement in the killing of civilians in the Kiev suburb of Bucha," the statement reads.

"There are no facts to prove such allegations.

"To the contrary, according to the Ministry of Defence in Russia, its military units have left Bucha on 30 March and there has not been a single incident of violence against the people [of] Bucha staying in it.

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"The reports of the 'massacre' came four days later, after Ukrainian forces have moved into Bucha.

"There are numerous independent assessments of these reports, which indicate its staged nature.

"That in itself should be a subject of a discussion at the highest political level internationally.

"In the current political circumstances, judging by the simultaneous public statements by the EU and US officials made right at the moment of the release of the anti-Russian allegations in favour of imposing new sanctions against Russia, we are clearly witnessing yet another stage in the disinformation war against Russia," the statement concluded.

Ukrainian officials say 410 people have been found dead in towns near Kyiv so far, with at least 300 killed in Bucha alone.

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A mass grave discovered in Bucha contained 57 bodies.