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Russian War Crimes in Ukraine: Films screening and chat with the co-founder of The Reckoning Project Nataliya Gumenyuk

On behalf of The Reckoning Project, the Ukrainian NGO Public Interest Journalism Lab  and the Ukrainie House in Denmark we are delighted to invite you to the screening of the selection of The Reckoning Project`s films on the Russian war crimes in Ukraine,  followed by the discussion with The Reckoning Project co-founder, Ukrainian journalist Nataliya Gumenyuk and one of the survivors.

When: 5 pm, January 19th, Friday
Location:  Ukraine House in Denmark, Strandgade 27B 

Executions, torture of prisoners, forcible removal of children, obstruction of evacuation, shelling of civilians, hospitals, and infrastructure... During the 20 months of the invasion the army of the Russian Federation committed almost all types of crimes mentioned in the Geneva Conventions. The General Prosecutor’s Office of Ukraine has opened almost 110,000 proceedings related to war crimes. Ukraine demands the creation of a special tribunal for the crime of aggression, which it calls ‘the mother of all crimes’.

The Reckoning Project: Ukraine Testifies – is an initiative of Ukrainian  and international reporters, analysts and researchers to document war crimes and create appealing stories which would become the historic documents of the Russian war in Ukraine.  Ukraine-based journalists and the researchers collect witnesses’ testimonies of the alleged war crimes,  record them in a neutral way according to the methodology which make them applicable for litigation, the team and analysts verify them, while Ukrainian writers and documentary filmmakers create multimedia content based on the testimonies, under the leadership of renown international and Ukrainian writers and reporters Janine di Giovani, Peter Pomerantsev, Public Interest Journalism Lab under Nataliya Gumenyuk leadership. 

In 2023 The Reckoning Project published the book “The Scariest Days Of My Life” which had featured key war crimes of the first year of the invasion. Some of the key stories were filmed as the documentaries, which we offer for your viewership

       The Mall Hit By a Rocket (In partnership with The Vanity Fair).

Story of the Kremenchuk Amstor shopping mall bombardment by the witnesses and survivors. June 27, 2022, was just another ordinary day at the household appliances and electronics store at the mall. Comfy bore the brunt of the damage: 12 of the 21 fatalities that day occurred in the store and 1 missed. The CC-TV footage from the Amstor Mall around midday on June 27 showed a typical summer day at the mall. The cameras that day filmed Larisa, the Comfy store’s cleaning lady, busy keeping the crowded store in order. At the moment of the strike, the CC-TV cameras caught a blinding white light, smoke, and then darkness.  Russia’s attack on Kremenchuk was one in a series of deadly strikes using a Kh-22 cruise missile on civilian objects. 

Authors: Nadia Burdiei, Lyuba Knorozok

Duration: 09:00 min

The Hospital that Was Taken Hostage (In partnership with The Vanity Fair)

The film tells the story of the life and resistance of the hospital in the city of Snihurivka, Mykolaiv Oblast, during the city’s occupation in 2022. In spite of the threats and scare tactics practiced by the Russian military for 9 months 80 medics continued providing medical help to the local residents. They performed surgeries without any proper conditions, were forced to treat their invaders, remaining truthful to their oath, but also treated the witnesses of the Russians – people who had been imprisoned and tortured by Russians, hid medical equipment during searches, and kept maintaining contact with the outside world to tell their true story while waiting for liberation.

Authors of the film: Anna Tsyhyma, Natalia Gumenyuk

Duration: 21:00 min

  “Return Me to My Dad”.  Three Ukrainian Children Sent To Russia Against Their Will (In partnership with The Vanity Fair)

The film tells the story of the Mezhevyi family, residents of the city of Mariupol, Donetsk Oblast, which was captured by the Russians. The family was in the city when the city was occupied. Yevhen (the father) and his three underage children (Matvii, Sviatoslava, and Oleksandra) had to hide from bombardments in bomb shelters. In early April, the children were separated from the father during forced evacuation: following violent filtration procedures, Yevhen spent 45 days in a prison in Olenivka; during that time, his children were held in occupied cities of Donetsk Oblast. Later, they joined a group of 31 children who were sent to “Poliany ''

sanatorium in Moscow Oblast, Russian Federation, where they were given a choice: adoption by a Russian family or orphanage. Fortunately, young Matvii found a way to describe the situation to his father during a phone call. Eventually, with the help of his friends, acquaintances, and volunteers, Yevhen managed to save his children from Russia and reach Latvia where the family is currently building their new life.

Authors of the film: Iryna Lopatina, Angelina Kariakina, Lyuba Knorozok

Duration: 10 min


Nataliya Gumenyuk is a Ukrainian journalist, and author specializing in conflict reporting. She is the founder and CEO of the Public Interest Journalism Lab which promotes constructive discussion around complex social. Since the Russian invasion, Gumenyuk co-founded"The Reckoning Project: Ukraine Testifies" which documents war crimes committed during the Russian invastion. The Reckoning Projects documentaries and articles had been published by TIME, Vanity Fair, The Atlantic, The Dial, and New Lines Magazine.  In 2023 under Gumenyuk's leadership within 'Connecting The Continents' initiative PIJL brings to Ukraine senior editors, public intellectuals and journalists from Latin America, Africa, and Asia. Nataliya is the author of several documentaries and books, including “The Lost Island: Tales From The Occupied Crimea”  and “The Maidan Tahrir”  - on the development after the Arab Spring, as well co-author of the book “The Most Scariest Days of My Life. The dispatches of the Reckoning Project.  As a foreign news correspondent, she has reported from over 50 countries. 

Nataliya regularly writes for The Guardian, Vanity Fair, The Washington Post, The Rolling Stone, Die Zeit, The New York Times, and The Atlantic.


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