The moderator of the political talk "Hart aber fair", Louis Klamroth, and his editors have to backtrack enormously: In a fact check, the WDR corrected the claims of a feature film from the show on Monday evening. The clip said that according to the United Nations, only Russian soldiers were involved in war crimes such as rape or torture. However, that is not correct, the WDR now conceded. UN reports speak of war crimes on both sides.
The WDR fact check now says: "It is correct that the United Nations have indications that crimes were also committed by the Ukrainians. The head of the UN human rights delegation in Ukraine, Matilda Bogner, came in a report on the treatment of prisoners of war , came to the conclusion in November last year that prisoners of war were beaten, tortured and even killed on both the Russian and Ukrainian sides."
The report states that Ukrainian prisoners of war are "systematically" mistreated by Russian troops, while "systematic" mistreatment by Ukrainian troops could not be determined," writes WDR in its fact check. According to this, the report is based on the survey of 159 Ukrainians and 175 Russian prisoners of war. The majority of Ukrainian prisoners testified that they had been subjected to torture and ill-treatment during their detention. "Similarly, the UN has documented cases of torture and ill-treatment by Ukrainian forces - mostly during arrest, initial interrogation or transport to a prison camp,” says WDR.
Another UN report on sexualised violence states that it takes place on both sides, writes WDR, but is mainly carried out by Russian troops. "Most of the cases were committed in the areas controlled by the Russian armed forces, but there were also cases committed in government-controlled areas."
Criticism of Klamroth on social media was sparked by the fact that the moderator had a violent argument with Wagenknecht after the feature film. The left-wing politician had contradicted the claims of the player: "Well, that's not true, the UN has clearly said that war crimes - and that's the case in every war - are committed by both sides." Klamroth ironed down the objection harshly. Among other things, he said that he could "not leave any false reports".
Now it turned out that it was Klamroth and the "Hart aber fair" editorial team that spread the misrepresentation.
Sources: "Spiegel", "Berliner Zeitung", "Süddeutsche Zeitung"