Nordic, Baltic countries condemn Russia's human rights violations in Ukraine

  • 2023-09-25
  • LETA/BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS - At the UN Human Rights Council, the Nordic and Baltic countries have condemned Russia's human rights violations in Ukraine, the Lithuanian Foreign Ministry said on Monday.

"The Russian authorities' unlawful deportation and transfer of children from Ukraine to Russia, occupied territories and Belarus and their illegal adoption there may constitute war crimes," Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis said in a statement he read out on behalf of the Nordic-Baltic (NB8) countries.

At the Human Rights Council, the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Ukraine on Monday "presented information about the numerous human rights violations caused by Russia's war against Ukraine", the Lithuanian ministry said.

The joint statement by Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Norway and Iceland condemned the human rights consequences of Russia's 19-month aggression against Ukraine.

It expressed concern about Russia's continued and deliberate torture, killing, sexual violence and destruction of vital civilian infrastructure in Ukraine.

The Nordic and Baltic countries underlined "the need to ensure accountability for all violations of international law committed by Russia, including the systematic displacement of children", the Foreign Ministry said.

At the UN Human Rights Council, the eight countries also voiced support for the Council of Europe's register of damage caused by Russia's invasion of Ukraine, which would contribute to ensuring Russia's financial responsibility.

The Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Ukraine was established by the Human Rights Council on March 4, 2022 to investigate all alleged violations and abuses of human rights, violations of international humanitarian law and related crimes in the context of Russia's aggression against Ukraine.

Lithuania became a full member of the UN Human Rights Council in the autumn of 2021. Its term will end in late 2024.