Legal and Moral Aspects οf Dealing with the Bodies of Fallen Soldiers in the Russian Aggression War Against Ukraine

Jacek Mrozek, Piotr Gawliczek, Andrzej Sobon
European Research Studies Journal, Volume XXVI, Issue 2, 540-552, 2023
DOI: 10.35808/ersj/3188


Purpose: This work is devoted to the moral and legal aspects of dealing with the bodies of fallen enemy soldiers on the Ukrainian side. During the so-called a special military operation against alleged Ukrainian neo-Nazis, the Russian army suffered very high casualties. After nine months of fighting, this number increased to about 90,000. victims. Such a high number of dead bodies is a challenge for the Ukrainian authorities. As a party that respects international conventions, Ukraine has committed itself to collecting, storing and identifying the bodies of a fallen enemy. Design/Methodology/Approach: The first objective of this study was to describe and evaluate the detailed legal basis on which the Ukrainian authorities carry out the given procedures. For it raises the question of how the enormous injustices suffered by the Ukrainian people will affect their moral condition? Will their anger and contempt towards the occupier allow them to retain their own humanity? Will the enemy not infect them with their own bestiality and hatred? The following research procedures were used: 1. Literature review; 2. Collection of qualitative and quantitative data; 3. Qualitative analysis; 4. Formulation of conclusions. Findings: Philosophical ideas were also raised, which were the basis for this and no other w the migratory and economic crisis triggered by Russia's military onslaught against Ukraine has proved a test for a number of international human rights and peace-keeping organisations. But the biggest challenge has been thrown at Ukraine. It is not just about the hardships of war or the humanitarian disaster facing Ukrainian society. The problem is much deeper. Here, the undoubted test for the Ukrainian side is the treatment of prisoners of war and the remains of the enemy. So far, Ukraine seems to be winning in this moral field as well. Practical implication: This paper is devoted to analysing the legal and ethical aspects of the treatment of the bodies of fallen soldiers fighting on the side of the Russian Federation of understanding the concept of dignified treatment of human corpses. Originality/value: The article presents original scientific research an alternative view of the personnel losses on the Russian side which proved incomparably higher. Indeed, Putin's regime was not prepared to wage a war on this scale. The Russian Federation was expected to lose around 90,000 soldiers. Additionally, if one considers soldiers who were wounded, were taken prisoner or went missing, Russian war losses would rise to around 200,000. At the same time, such many dead poses an undoubted organisational challenge, as they cannot be abandoned on the battlefield. This brings us to the main thread of our deliberations.

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