A Russian soldier who was captured in Ukraine has spoken out about the invasion calling the bombing of a maternity hospital the ''most perverse f**king form of neo-Nazism".
President Vladimir Putin has lied to his citizens telling them the invasion of Ukraine is a special operation to rid the country of neo-Nazism.
But the prisoners of war who spoke to American broadcaster CNN said Putin had given orders for troops to commit crimes in Ukraine.
CNN has reported that an officer and fighter-bomber pilot revealed there had deep disquiet about their mission and the suffering of Ukrainian civilians among the Russian serviceman.
When asked what he thought of Putin's claims that Ukraine was run by neo-Nazi, he replied: "I think it was invented as a pretext and is something that the world cannot understand.
"But Putin and his circle need this in order to achieve their own objectives.
"One such step was that it would be beneficial for them to spread disinformation about fascism and Nazism.
"We didn't see any Nazis or fascists.
"Russians and Ukrainians can communicate in the same language, so we see the good in these people.
"It's hard to give a direct assessment of his actions. But, at the bare minimum, judging by the consequences of his orders, he is incorrect."
The professional serviceman then became emotional, CNN reports, and spoke about the suffering inflicted on civilians since the invasion.
He said: "It's not just about demilitarising Ukraine or the defeat of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, but now cities of peaceful civilians are being destroyed.
"Even, I don't know, what can justify, f**k, the tears of a child, or even worse, the deaths of innocent people, children."
He added that the troops were aware of what had happened in places like Mariupol, where nearly 1,600 people have been killed since the invasion began.
He added: "It was a horrifying fact, not just because it is a crime. It's vandalism.
"You cannot forgive such things. To bomb a maternity ward? It's the most perverse f**king form of neo-Nazism, neo-fascism.
"Who could think of such a thing?"
CNN say the men who are being held captive by the Ukrainians, but added that they had been treated acceptably, been offered food and drink, and medical treatment.
In order to protect the prisoner of war's identity his full name was not used in any of the CNN reports.
The broadcaster added that they requested access to speak with the prisoners with the Ukrainian Interior Ministry and they spoke to the three men following a press conference in Kyiv on Friday.
CNN added that they were the only journalists in the room when the pilot made this remarks.
They added: "At no time did Ukrainian Security Services, who were in the room throughout, interject or direct CNN or the prisoners to ask or answer specific questions.
"The interview was conducted in Russian.
"The prisoners were not handcuffed, and while they didn't move from their seats, seemed to be under no physical restraint."