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The bodies of five civilians, including those of the mayor, her husband and her son, were found with their hands tied in the village of Motyzhyn, 45 km west of kyiv, Ukrainian authorities said.

Police showed Agence France-Presse reporters four bodies, including that of the mayor, half-buried in a grave in a pine forest bordering her house in Motyzhyn.

A fifth body was found in a well in the garden.

The dead, including two men who were not part of the mayor’s family, were said to have had their hands tied behind their backs.

Separately, a Reuters reporter said he saw the bodies in a forest near a farmhouse, which had been virtually destroyed, just outside the village of Motyzhyn. Nearby, a burnt-out tractor could be seen and one of those buried in the sand had its head registered.

The reporter also saw another body of a man in a well near the burnt-out farmhouse, where black scorch marks climbed up its few remaining walls. He looked like he had been tied up.

Local residents carry the body of a civilian who locals say was killed by Russian soldiers in the village of Motyzhyn. Photograph: Gleb Garanich/Reuters

Mayor Olga Sukhenko, 50, her husband and their son were abducted by Russian troops on March 24, police said.

Residents said the mayor and her husband refused to collaborate with the invading Russian forces.

Anton Herashchenko, adviser to the Ukrainian Interior Ministry, wrote in a Telegram post:

There have been Russian occupiers here. They tortured and murdered the entire family of the village chief.

Herashchenko named those killed as Olga Sukhenko, her husband Igor Sukhenko and their 25-year-old son Oleksandr.

“The occupiers suspected that they were collaborating with our military, telling us where to target our artillery. These scum tortured, massacred and killed the whole family. They will be responsible for it. »

On March 11, the mayor of Melitopol in southern Ukraine was kidnapped by Russian troops but released after a few days.

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