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There have been no successful major prosecutions over the last 30 years in Ukraine, with the office of Ukraine’s prosecutor general dogged by accusations of corruption and inefficiency since the country declared independence. Now Iryna Venediktova, appointed to the role in 2019, is attempting to gather evidence of Russian war crimes.
More from Guardian correspondent Isobel Koshiw in Borodianka:
Surrounded by a scrum of reporters with a backdrop of bombed-out apartment buildings and rubble in Borodianka, a town in the Kyiv region, stood Iryna Venediktova, Ukraine’s prosecutor general.
Venediktova is carrying the weight of bringing almost 2,000 cases of war crimes committed by Russia’s occupying forces to court at home and abroad. Her office is the only body in Ukraine with the power to investigate. It is through her office that information relating to war crimes is being collected, investigations will be conducted and domestic and international cases will be built.