‘The Russians beat us senseless in their torture chambers’ | World

The middle-aged men of Izyum speak with shaky voices. When the Russians came the younger men had already fled, and it was the older ones, army veterans especially, who were suspect.

“The first time they took me away, they beat me until I was a vegetable,” said Oleksandr Hlushko, 53, who once served in the army and who the Russians thought must be in touch with Ukrainian partisans. After five days in which he had his ribs crushed, was beaten about the head and whipped on the soles of his feet, he was thrown out of a car and dumped by the side of the road.

He was in hospital for six weeks. “If it wasn’t for the doctors, I wouldn’t be here today,” he


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