In north-eastern Ukraine, a counter-offensive has seen the nation’s forces recapture swathes of territory, and drive out Russian troops.

But in the newly-liberated areas, relief and sorrow are intertwined – as accounts emerge of torture and killings during the long months of Russian occupation.

Artem, who lives in the city of Balakliya in the Kharkiv province told newsmen he was held by Russians for more than 40 days, and was tortured with electrocution.

Balakliya was liberated on 8 September after being occupied for more than six months. The epicentre of the brutality was the city’s police station, which Russian forces used as their headquarters.

Artem said he could hear screams of pain and terror coming from other cells.

The occupiers made sure the cries could be heard, he said, by turning off the building’s noisy ventilation system.

Credit/ BBC

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