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Russian soldier asks for forgiveness as he faces widow of cyclist he shot dead

A Russian soldier aged 21 has asked a woman for forgiveness after shooting her husband while he was riding his bicycle.

Sergeant Vadim Schishimarin confessed to the murder of Oleksandr Shihelipov, a civilian as Russian soldiers entered the village at Chupakhivka just four days after the invasion began.

When proceedings began Wednesday at a Kyiv District Court, he pleaded guilty for the 28 February murder.

This is the first trial for war crimes in the Ukraine war.

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A Ukrainian prosecutor requested that the court sentence him to life imprisonment for the murder of the 62-year old.

Shishimarin, in a tracksuit with his head down and his hair down, made a sad appearance in court.

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Addressing Kateryna Shelipov, the soldier stated: “I accept my responsibility… I beg you to forgive me.”

According to the Kremlin, it doesn’t have any information on the trial and the absence of a Ukrainian diplomatic mission means that it can’t help.

Image Kateryna shelipova stated that she would not object to him being released in a prisoner exchange

Mrs Shelipova testified that she heard distant shots from their yard the day of the murder.

“I ran to my husband, he was already deceased. Shot in the head. She shot me in the head.

Mrs Shelipova stated to the court that her husband was unarmed and was wearing civilian clothes.

She stated that they have a 27-year old son and two grandchildren.


‘Shot in the head while cycling and on your phone’

Ukrainian prosecutors claim that Shishimarin and four others had stolen a car to escape from Ukrainian forces after they were targeted in a column.

They arrived in Chupakhivka (about 200 miles east from Kyiv) and saw Mr Shelipov riding his bike and talking on the phone.

Prosecutors claimed that Shishimarin was being ordered to kill by another soldier in order to prevent him from reporting on their presence.

He is said to have fired multiple shots through the car’s window at Mr. Shelipov’s head.

He died just a few meters from his home.

Image Shishimarin claimed he fired three to four shots at his victim

Shishimarin answered “no” when asked whether he was forced to comply with an order that could be considered a war crime.

The defendant stated to the court that he had fired three to four bullets in a brief burst.

According to the soldier, he is from Irkutsk Oblast (a Siberia region) and was the eldest of five siblings.

Mrs Shelipova stated that she would not object to her husband being released to Russia in a prisoner swap. This was to free “our boys” from the city of Mariupol.

Many Ukrainians are hopeful that Russia will release their captured soldiers in exchange for the trial.

Russian senior politicians have asked for the trial of Azov regiment fighters. They were part of Mariupol’s last stand at Azov steel plants.

Image Shishimarin is said to have been one of the thousands of war crimes.

Oleksandr Shilpov’s death is what the West and Ukraine agree on: the tip of an iceberg.

Ukraine claims to have identified over 10,000 war crimes.

Russia denies targeting civilians and being involved in war crimes.

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