Bucha, Apr 3 (AP) Ukrainian troops moved cautiously to retake territory north of Kyiv on Sunday, even amid fears that Russian forces left booby-trapped explosives.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy warned that departing Russian troops were creating a catastrophic situation for civilians by leaving mines around homes, abandoned equipment and even the bodies of those killed. His claims could not be independently verified.
Ukrainian troops took up positions in the town of Bucha, and were stationed at the entrance of Antonov Airport in Hostomel after retaking territory from Russian forces.
In Bucha, AP reporters counted at least 6 bodies of civilians scattered along a street and in the front yard of a house. Ukrainian soldiers, backed by a column of tanks and armored vehicles, attached cables to the bodies and pulled them off the street for fear they may be booby-trapped. Soldiers also cleared barricades and inspected suspicious objects, placing red rags on remnants of unexploded ordnance to draw attention to the possibility of explosions.
Residents of the town said the civilians were killed by Russian soldiers without apparent provocation.
Ukraine and its Western allies reported mounting evidence of Russia withdrawing its forces from around Kyiv and building its troop strength in eastern Ukraine. The visible shift did not mean the country faced a reprieve from more than five weeks of war or that the more than 4 million refugees who have fled Ukraine will return soon.