Russian soldier pleads guilty to shooting unarmed Ukrainian civilian

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(KYIV, Ukraine) — Russian Sgt. Vadim Shishimarin pleaded guilty on Wednesday to killing an unarmed Ukrainian civilian. The guilty plea carries a life sentence.

Shishimarin, 21, is accused of shooting a 62-year-old man on Feb. 28. The man was a resident of Chupakhivka who was riding a bike on the roadside when he was shot, according to Iryna Venediktova, Ukraine’s prosecutor general.

This is the first trial Ukraine has conducted for an act that could be considered a war crime.

Asked by the presiding judge whether he accepted his guilt, Shishimarin said: “Yes. Fully yes.”

Shishimarin is charged with murder and two counts of robbery. He surrendered to Ukrainian law enforcement and has been a prisoner of war since, Ukrainian prosecutor Andriy Syniuk said.

Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov dismissed the proceedings on Wednesday, telling reporters that accusations leveled against Russian soldiers by Ukraine were “simply fake or staged.”

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