EP calls for political and military leadership of Russia be held accountable for crimes of aggression against Ukraine

  • 2023-01-19
  • LETA/TBT Staff

RIGA -  In the resolution adopted today, the members of the European Parliament (EP) call for the political and military leadership of Russia be held accountable for crimes of aggression against Ukraine, Janis Krastins, press secretary of the EP in Latvia, informed LETA.

The EP points out that the atrocities committed by Russian forces in Bucha, Irpin and many other Ukrainian cities show Russia's brutality and underlines the importance of coordinated international action to bring the perpetrators to justice under international law.

MEPs ask the European Union (EU), in close cooperation with Ukraine and the international community, to encourage the creation of a special international tribunal to prosecute Russia's political and military leadership and its allies.

MEPs argue that the creation of the tribunal would fill a vacuum in international criminal law and help the investigation of the International Criminal Court, which currently has no jurisdiction over crimes of aggression against Ukraine.

MEPs emphasize that the exact composition and methods of operation of the special tribunal have yet to be determined, however, it must have the jurisdiction to investigate not only the activities of Russian President Vladimir Putin and the political and military leadership of Russia, but also the activities of Belarus' authoritarian leader Alexander Lukashenko and his close associates in Belarus.

The MEPs also emphasize that the EU's preparatory work in connection with the special tribunal should start immediately and special attention should be paid to the measures to establish the court in cooperation with Ukraine, as well as to help Ukrainian and international institutions to collect evidence that could be used in the tribunal.

The EP believes that the creation of a special tribunal would clearly signal to the Russian and international community that President Putin and the Russian leadership can be convicted of the crime of aggression in Ukraine. Finally, the MEPs emphasize that it will no longer be possible for Russia under the leadership of Putin to return to the usual order of things in relations with the West.

The resolution was adopted with 472 votes in favor, 19 against and 33 abstentions.