The occupiers committed a war crime.
The shooting of Ukrainian prisoners is most likely a violation of Article 41 of the Geneva Convention. A report by the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) describes the case of the shooting of unarmed Ukrainian prisoners near the village of Stepove (near Avdiivka) and the reaction of Ukraine, in particular Kyiv’s appeal to international organizations with a request to investigate this crime.
ISW analysts recall that attacking soldiers recognized as hors de combat [no longer participating in combat - Ed.], specifically including those who have clearly expressed an intention to surrender, is a violation of Article 41 of the Geneva Convention on the Protection of Victims of International Armed Conflicts.
ISW also noted that several Russian milbloggers tried to deny accusations against Russian troops (or downplay the scale of the crime). “It happens in war” and “It happens” – such comments appeared in pro-war Russian publics.