The attorneys general of the countries of the Joint Research Group launched by the European justice agency Eurojust signed this Saturday in Lviv an agreement for the creation of a International Center for the Prosecution of Crimes of Aggression in The Hague.
The representatives of Ukraine, Poland, Slovakia, Romania, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania sealed the document at the international conference “United for Justice” that kicked off on Friday in the western Ukrainian city and seeks to establish mechanisms to prosecute Russian crimes in Ukraine.
Ukrainian Prosecutor General Andriy Kostin noted that the establishment of such a center is the first step towards the creation of a special court for the crime of Russian aggression against Ukraine for which the Russian political and military elite must be held accountable.
Kostin expressed the expectation of that the center begin with the task of collecting evidence next July.
Eurojust President Ladislav Hamran confirmed that the base will be the agency’s headquarters in The Hague and urged international partners to send their experts, prosecutors and investigators to participate in the initiative.
Mechanisms for guarantee let there be justice for the victims of the crime of assault, sexual crimes and deliberate attacks against civilian infrastructure.
Metsola reiterated the commitment of the European Union (EU) to bring perpetrators of war crimes to justice and described the creation of the International Center in The Hague as an important step.
Zelenska, for her part, stressed that the number of rapes recorded during the war shows that the Russian Army uses the deliberate sexual violence as a physical and psychological weapon against the Ukrainian population.
He indicated that the prosecution of these and other war crimes is necessary “as a precedent” so that potential aggressors know that “This type of act will not go unpunished.”
In this sense, Pramila Patten, the United Nations special representative for sexual violence in conflicts, recalled that the UN Human Rights Committee has documented thousands of these crimes against men, women and even children.
The Spanish State Attorney General, Álvaro García Ortiz, also participated in the conference, reiterating Spain’s willingness to contribute to the clarification of the war crimes committed by Russia and to seek formulas that allow those responsible to be prosecuted.
García Ortiz stressed the importance of achieving a broad consensus to that these crimes be prosecuted internationally and not only under national jurisdiction and recalled that Spain has sent specialized police and forensic agents to Ukraine to collect evidence of possible war crimes.
With information from EFE
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