59-year-old Ukrainian woman says Russian officer made her take her top off …

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A heavily damaged building is seen in Mariupol, Ukraine, on April 13, 2022.AP Photo/Alexei Alexandrov, File

  • A 59-year-old Ukrainian woman described her experience in a Russian “filtration camp.”

  • She said a Russian soldier suspected her of being a sniper and made her take her top off.

  • Russians have interrogated Ukrainians at these camps, looking for military connections.

A 59-year-old Ukrainian woman said she was interrogated at a Russian “filtration camp,” where soldiers have been interrogating captured Ukrainian civilians, and made to take her top off.

Olena, from the southeastern Ukrainian city of Mariupol, told The Guardian she spent three weeks at the camp sleeping on the floor, where she was cold and hungry, before she was interrogated.

Olena said a male Russian officer at her camp suspected her of being a sniper because she had bruises on her soldiers, The Guardian reported.

“I told him, I’m turning 60 years old this August. How could I be a sniper?” she told The Guardian.

But she said the officer dismissed her thoughts, and said: “I’m not wearing my glasses anyway. Take your top off now.”

Since the start of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Russian forces have abducted Ukrainian from their homes and sent them to so-called “filtration camps,” where they are interrogated for government or military ties before they are either let go or further detained, according to officials and people who have been there. A top US official said last month that Russia had taken thousands of Ukrainians to these camps.

Olena, whose last name was not given in the report, spoke to The Guardian from Tbilisi, Georgia. The newspaper did not say how or when she was able to leave the camp.

She said she was brought to a camp Nikolske, a town in the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic, a region in eastern Ukraine run by pro-Kremlin separatists. In February, Russia and its allies recognized Donetsk and Luhansk, another breakaway region, as independent, but most countries and international organizations dispute this characterization.

The Guardian noted that Ukrainians fleeing the war have had to go east, towards Russia, to escape the fighting, and hence be processed by one of these camps.

Read the original article on Business Insider