The International Criminal Court (ICC) will open an investigation into Russia’s war crimes and crimes against humanity in Ukraine “as quickly as possible”, the organization’s chief prosecutor has announced. .
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Karim Khan said in a declare that the government in Kyiv has granted jurisdiction to the court based in The Hague despite not being a member of the ICC. “I tasked my team with exploring all the evidence preservation opportunities,” he added.
The announcement follows the claim by Oksana Markarova, Ukraine’s ambassador to the US, that Moscow deployed an illegal vacuum bomb in a tender to crush the fierce resistance against the aggression of neighboring peoples.
‘Fighting must stop’
British-born lawyer Khan said he was “satisfied that there are reasonable grounds to believe that both war crimes and crimes against humanity were committed in Ukraine”.
His “next step” is to refer the investigation to ICC judges for approval, he continued, although an “alternative route” could “further expedite the matter”. shall be reserved for an ICC member state to refer to the case. to his office.
This “will allow us to actively and immediately conduct independent and objective investigations by the office,” Khan said.
More and more senior figures are calling for Russia to be formally investigated. Lithuanian Prime Minister Ingrida Simonyte told Articles washington on Monday that “what Putin is doing, it’s just a murder and nothing else. I hope he stays in The Hague.”
Sergey Bobok / AFP via Getty Images
The United Nations General Assembly also met to discuss the crisis, “after Russia vetoed a draft United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolution on Friday that would have condemned the invasion “, Al Jazeera reported.
“The war in Ukraine must stop. It is raging across the country from the air, on land and at sea. It has to stop now,” United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told the panel on Monday. “The guns are talking now, but the path to dialogue must always be open.”
The policymaking body is “expected to vote on a draft resolution denouncing the invasion later this week,” according to the broadcaster, which noted that “Russia and four other permanent members of the The UNSC has no veto power in the General Assembly”.
War on land
Deploying vacuum bombs, also known as thermobaric weapons, could “constitute a war crime” if “used in a civilian setting”, Politico reported. The weapons work by “taking oxygen to create powerful, high-temperature explosions”.
Moscow deployed a vacuum bomb that destroyed a Ukrainian army base in the northeastern town of Okhtyrka, killing 70 soldiers, according to a post on Telegram account of the regional chief Sumy Dmytro Zhyvytskyy.
Graphic images of the aftermath of the attack show the flattened building being inspected by the military, and part of a man’s body ripped apart by the blast.
When asked about Russia’s reported use of vacuum bombs, the White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki told reporters on Monday that “if that is true, it is likely to be a war crime”.
The government in Kyiv is also preparing an ICC case against Moscow, amid “existing” evidence suggesting Russia is using “bombs, cluster munitions indiscriminately” and “leveling residential buildings in Kharkiv”, Ukraine’s second largest city, Guardians reported.
Ukraine “also brought Russia to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) for conducting an invasion on the pretext of false statements about genocide This newspaper adds.
David Bosco, an expert on international justice at Indiana University, said the ICJ case “is a symbolic move by Ukraine”. “That won’t do much because it’s not really clear that the ICJ will have jurisdiction.”
What did the Russian missile hit yesterday? BBC described as the “heart of culture” of Kharkiv, in what officials labeled a “cruel” attack. An opera house, concert hall and government offices were attacked in Freedom Square, the second largest city center square in Europe.
Of Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy repeated war crimes accusations against Russia after the attack, telling the European Parliament that “this is the price of freedom”.
“This is the horror for Ukraine,” he continued. “There were no military targets in the square – nor were there any military targets in the residential areas of Kharkiv, where the rockets were fired.”
Dursun Aydemir / Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
Groups including investigative journalism agency Bellingcat are “working with other organizations to preserve evidence that will be admissible” in a future war crimes or crimes against humanity trial. , The Guardian reported.
“We have been working on open source evidence accountability issues for a long time, so we are very familiar with the needs of stakeholders like the ICC,” says founder. Bellingcat, Eliot Higgins told the newspaper.
“Our goal then is to make that data available to any accountability process that wants to use it.”
https://www.theweek.co.uk/news/world-news/russia/955938/has-russia-committed-war-crimes-ukraine Did Russia commit war crimes in Ukraine?