World

The ICC will launch “active” investigation into war crimes in Ukraine

  • The Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court said that an active investigation into possible war crimes in Ukraine “will continue immediately”.
  • This comes after his office received support from 39 countries, including all EU member states, as well as Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand, Switzerland and several Latin American countries.
  • British Prime Minister Boris Johnson told parliament on Wednesday that Russian President Vladimir Putin was “guilty of a war crime” after civilians were bombed in Ukraine.

The Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court said on Wednesday that an active investigation into possible war crimes in Ukraine “will continue immediately”, after his office has received support from 39 countries.

The countries include all EU member states as well as Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand, Switzerland and several Latin American countries.

“A few moments ago, I informed the ICC Presidency of my decision to immediately proceed with active investigations into the situation,” in Ukraine, Karim Khan wrote in a statement.

“Our work of gathering evidence has now begun,” he added.

Khan announced on Monday that he was opening an investigation into alleged war crimes committed after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine last week.

Khan said he believed there was a “reasonable basis” for believing that crimes within the court’s jurisdiction had been committed.

But he needed the judges of the Hague-based court to approve his decision before proceeding.

However, the ICC countries ‘referral now means that Khan’s investigation can continue without the judges’ approval, speeding up the process.

“These references allow my office to continue to open an inquiry into the situation in Ukraine from November 21, 2013 onwards,” Khan said.

It will include “any past and present allegations of war crimes, crimes against humanity or genocide committed on any part of Ukraine’s territory by any person,” Khan said.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson told parliament on Wednesday that Russian President Vladimir Putin was “guilty of a war crime” after civilians were bombed in Ukraine, repeating an earlier indictment by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

Khan, who was recently named as prosecutor, said his investigation would be conducted “objectively and independently” and focus on “ensuring responsibility for crimes that fall within ICC jurisdiction”.

The Hague-based ICC was established in 2002 as an independent court to prosecute people accused of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity.

However, the ICC can only prosecute crimes committed in the territory of its 123 member states.

Ukraine is not a member, but accepted in 2014 the jurisdiction of the court.

Moscow withdrew from the ICC, so the court will only be able to reach Russians if they are arrested on the territory of a state that respects the court’s jurisdiction.

The ICC is also hampered by the fact that it has no police force and relies on state parties to detain suspects – with varying degrees of success in the past.


Never miss a story. Choose from our selection of newsletters to have the news you want delivered directly to your inbox.

The ICC will launch “active” investigation into war crimes in Ukraine

Source link The ICC will launch “active” investigation into war crimes in Ukraine

Back to top button