Recently, Ukraine's 24th Mechanized Brigade made a remarkable discovery. Inside a destroyed Russian armored vehicle lay a Sony mirrorless camera. After looking at the memory card, it's clear that the camera was stolen from a Ukrainian family by Russian soldiers. As they hadn't bothered to delete the images of the original owners, there were hundreds of family photos. But that wasn't all; there were also 11 photographs and three videos taken by Russian soldiers.
The men are dressed in fatigues and some are wearing the white armbands that are a trademark of Russian soldiers in Ukraine. They are in a wooded area and in two of the photographs, a machine gun sits casually behind the group. In one photo, a soldier eats a meal, while another image shows one of the soldiers holding a lens from the Sony camera.
The 24th Mechanized Brigade published these images on Facebook, and to respect the privacy of the Ukrainian family who lost the camera, posted just one photo of them in hopes to reconnect them with their family photos.
“In front of you, seemingly ordinary photos from an ordinary camera. Many Ukrainian families use such ‘milʹnički' to create their personal family photo archive: vacations, important family events, and much more,” they posted on Facebook. “But this camera has its own story. Russian invaders stole it from the civilian home of ordinary Ukrainians in Kyiv and brought it with them all the way to the Luhansk region.
“Thanks to their low IQ, we have a small compilation of portraits of the occupiers from the 31st Brigade of the Russian Federation committing their atrocities in Ukraine. We sincerely hope that with the owners of the camera, whose shots the Russians have not even started to delete from the memory card, everything is fine and soon we will be able to return their camera, which has made such a long way.”
A press officer from the Ukrainian military spoke with Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and said that, based on the images on the camera, they believe that it came from the northern suburb of Hostomel and was stolen when the Russians were trying to advance on Kyiv. There were nearly 1,000 family photos on the camera, including vacation pictures and a graduation ceremony.
While the status of the Russian soldiers pictured remains unclear, the Ukrainian military is more concerned with reuniting the family with their camera in an effort to return their personal memories.
Ukrainian soldiers found a mirrorless camera inside a destroyed Russian armored vehicle.
The memory card contained nearly 1,000 photos of a Ukrainian family.
The Russian soldiers took several photos and videos of themselves.
Now, the Ukrainian military is hoping to reunite the camera with its rightful owners.