A 24-year-old Russian military man, tank commander Anatoly Zhuravlev, who ordered the firing on a hospital in Trostyanets, Sumy region, has been sentenced. A Ukrainian court sentenced Zhuravlev to 11 years in prison in absentia, and Slidstvo.Info journalists identified the occupier.

On 14 February, the Trostyanets District Court of Sumy Region sentenced Anatoly Zhuravlev, a tank commander of the 6th Tank Company of the 12th Guards Tank Regiment “Shepetivsky” of the 4th Guards Tank Division of Kantemyrivsk, for violating the laws and customs of war during the occupation of Sumy Region.

According to the case file, on 23 March 2022, Zhuravlev ordered the gunner-operator to fire twice from a T-80U tank at the building of the hospital’s inpatient unit. At the time of the attack, only civilians were inside the building — patients and staff of the medical facility.

The Russians hit the maternity ward on the second floor. As a result, the parapet part of the inpatient building and the wall were damaged, and windows were smashed. 

After the de-occupation, on 6 April 2022, law enforcement officers conducted an inspection in an abandoned tank. On the commander’s seat, they found a leather wallet containing Zhuravlev’s military ID, chevrons, patches for Russian military uniforms and other documents. According to his military ID, Zhuravlev was called up for service in 2018, and since 25 August 2020 he has held the position of tank commander, before that he was a gunner-operator, driver mechanic, and was promoted to the rank of sergeant.

Witnesses told the court that on that day, the hospital no longer had fuel for generators and food supplies, so patients and women in labour began to be evacuated. There were 8 seriously ill patients left on the 3rd and 5th floors. The hospital staff began to bring them down to the basement and saw a tank 300 metres away through the window.

After the shelling, a hospital worker was passing a Russian checkpoint and saw the same tank and remembered Zhuravlev’s face.

Another Ukrainian saw a T-80-like tank near the hospital. The occupiers moved into a three-storey building, and the residents were forced to move to the basement. Later, a resident of this house identified Zhuravlev from a photo. 

In addition, according to the investigation, the Russians visited people in the basement, carrying a plan of the hospital, and asked them about the facility. Employees of the medical facility also said that before the shelling, the occupiers entered the hospital, gathered the staff in the lobby and told them to wear white bandages on their left arm and right leg.

Before that, white flags with a red cross had been installed on the inpatient building near the reception area and at the entrance to the hospital, which the Russian military could not help but see, and the name of the hospital was written in large letters on the facade of the building.

Hospital in Trostianets / Photo: SECURITY SERVICE OF UKRAINE

It should have been obvious to the military that the building he ordered to fire at was a civilian object — a hospital, an attack on which is prohibited under international humanitarian law.

Slidstvo.Info journalists found the occupier’s page on the Russian social network VKontakte.

24-year-old Anatoly Zhuravlev is a native of Valuiki (Belgorod oblast). Later, he lived in Maloyaroslavets, Kaluga oblast.

Zhuravlev is not very active on his personal pages on Russian social media.


In 2023 and 2024, the occupier distributed several photographs showing an eye injury that he could have received in the war in Ukraine.

Slidstvo.Info called the occupier, but Zhuravlev hung up and blocked the journalists’ contacts in messengers when he heard about his sentence.  

For the crime, Anatoly Zhuravlev faces 11 years in prison (part 1 of Article 438 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine).

Earlier, the Trostyanets District Court sentenced in absentia to 11 years in prison Pyotr Smirnov, a tank commander of the 5th Tank Company of the 2nd Tank Battalion of the Chertkovsky Guards Tank Regiment of the 2nd Taman Guards Motorised Rifle Division, and gunner-operator Ainur Mukhametkhanov, who carried out the criminal order of the commander and fired a shot from a T-80U tank at the building of the same hospital on 18 March 2022.

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