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ICC prosecutor pushes for full investigation into Ukraine war crimes

A preliminary probe found that several war crimes and crimes against humanity had been conducted. Prosecutors looked into crimes during the pro-EU protests, annexation of Crimea, and the conflict in Eastern Ukraine.

By: Deutsche Welle | December 12, 2020 2:41:26 pm

A prosecutor for the International Criminal Court (ICC) on Friday pushed for a full investigation into a “broad range” of war crimes committed in Ukraine since 2014.

A six-year preliminary probe looked into allegations of war crimes during the pro-European Union protests in 2013-14, the Russian annexation of Crimea, and the conflict in eastern Ukraine.

“My office has concluded that there is a reasonable basis at this time to believe that a broad range of conduct constituting war crimes and crimes against humanity within the jurisdiction of the court have been committed in the context of the situation in Ukraine,” said chief prosecutor Fatou Bensouda in a statement.

Ukraine is not a member of the ICC, but has accepted the court’s jurisdiction into the conflicts of Crimea and eastern Ukraine.

Pro-Russia fight for independence

“These crimes, committed by the different parties to the conflict, were also sufficiently grave to warrant investigation by my Office, both in quantitative and qualitative terms,” said Bensouda.

Thousands have been killed since 2014 in the conflict for independence by pro-Russia rebels in the eastern part of the country. This also included the downing of the Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 in 2014, where all 298 people on board were killed.

Russia is not a member of the ICC, and does not accept its jurisdiction.

Last December, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky had agreed to take measures to relaunch the peace process in the region.

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