As Ukraine prepares a counter-offensive to retake its territories captured by Russian troops, it is still wrestling with a thorny question: how to deal with collaborators? There are those who willingly served the Russians in their occupational administrations and participated in the repressions against the Ukrainians. Others helped the Moscow Armed Forces. But there are also those whose culpability is much more difficult to assess: teachers, lower-ranking public servants, and police officers.
Most deny wrongdoing or say they only helped the Russian occupiers under duress, a credible claim in many cases, considering the violence of the invaders. Yet thousands are under suspicion and hundreds are on trial in the relatively small parts of Ukraine that have already been retaken. Gulliver Cragg of France 24 reports from one such area, the Kharkiv region.