They lie in white and black bags at 20 degrees below zero Celsius, but the stench is still overpowering. Filled with the bodies of 62 Russian soldiers, the bags are stacked in a refrigerated train car in a secret location on the outskirts of Ukraine’s second-largest city. A spry, elderly train worker spun open the vault-like door to reveal the bloodied bags as the scent hung in the damp air.
“We are collecting these bodies for sanitary reasons, because dogs have been eating them,” said a Ukrainian soldier who would only give his call sign, Summer. “Eventually we will return them to their loved ones.”…
One of the soldiers handling the Russian corpses in Kharkiv said he hoped Ukraine’s decision to safeguard Russia’s war dead may improve its chances of getting its own back from behind enemy lines.
“For me,” he said, “it is most important that we bring the bodies of our boys back to their families. So we treat these bodies respectfully.”
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