On the same day as the HRW report, U.K. Ambassador to Ukraine Melinda Simmons called rape an element of Russia's unprovoked war campaign. "Though we don't yet know the full extent of its use in Ukraine, it's already clear it was part of Russia's arsenal," Simmons wrote. "Women raped in front of their kids, girls in front of their families, as a deliberate act of subjugation."

The identities of a Russian soldier and his wife who discussed the rape of Ukrainian women in a phone call have been revealed following an investigation by RFE/RL.

The investigation found that Roman Bykovsky, 27, and his wife, Olga Bykovskaya, whose maiden name is Pinyasovaya, were the couple behind the shocking call that has fed fears of mass rape of Ukrainian women by Russian soldiers.

During the call, which Ukrainian security services in the Kherson region in the country’s south said they intercepted before publishing it earlier this month, a woman can be heard giving permission to a man to rape Ukrainian women.

“Yes, I allow it. Just wear protection,” the woman says between laughs.

Reporters from RFE/RL’s Russian Service and Schemes, a joint investigative project run by RFE/RL’s Ukrainian Service, received the telephone numbers of the participants in the infamous call from sources in Ukraine’s security services and used the numbers to find the social media accounts of Bykovsky and his wife.

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