June 18, 2024

The UN Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Ukraine under the UN Human Rights Council continues to record torture and other crimes committed by the Russian military against Ukrainians and also does not rule out incitement of genocide in the Russian media.

Source: United Nations Human Rights Council

Details: Erik Møse, Chair of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Ukraine, said that in the second year of the armed conflict, evidence of war crimes committed by the Russian armed forces in Ukraine continues to be collected.

The Commission conducts in-depth investigations into unlawful attacks using explosives, torture, sexual and gender-based violence, and attacks on energy infrastructure. These investigations may clarify whether torture and attacks on such infrastructure are crimes against humanity.

Attacks involving explosive weapons in populated areas have caused significant destruction and damage and have become the main cause of death and injury among civilians. There were attacks on residential buildings, a medical facility, a railway station, restaurants, shops and other targets. In most cases, there was no military presence at or near the affected facilities.

The Commission investigated the cause of the dam breach in Nova Kakhovka.

Møse reported that the Commission had collected additional evidence that the use of torture by the Russian armed forces in the territories under their control was widespread and systematic: the main victims were persons accused of being informers for the Ukrainian forces.

Similar torture methods were used in various institutions during interrogations, mainly to extract information from the victims. Rape and sexual violence took place.

Quote: “The Commission was also concerned about the possibility of genocide and incitement to genocide, and was continuing its investigations,” the message reads.

In addition, Russia threatens global food security, global peace and security.

Ukraine continued to document and investigate over 100,000 cases of Russian war crimes.

During the debate, speakers condemned the systematic and widespread use of torture, deliberate killings and extrajudicial executions, attacks on civilians, rape, illegal imprisonment and illegal deportation documented by the Commission.

Some speakers stated that Ukrainian children were relocated or deported to Russian-occupied territories or the Russian Federation, and were separated from their families for long periods of time.

More than 19,000 Ukrainian children were victims of forced displacement and deportation planned and carried out by the top leadership of the Russian regime, which is a war crime and a crime against humanity that can also be equated to genocide under the 1948 Genocide Convention.

The Commission believes that a lack of awareness of the number of displaced children may hinder a rapid return process.

The Commission is concerned about the scale and gravity of the crimes committed by the Russian Armed Forces and stressed the need to bring the perpetrators to justice.

It also called on Ukrainian forces to investigate the few reports of human rights violations committed by their own forces.

Møse noted that in March the EU Council considered the comprehensive written report of the Commission and extended the Commission’s mandate for another year.

Recently, three commissioners visited Ukraine and held instructive discussions with representatives of the authorities in Kyiv. They also talked to the victims of the attacks.

The commission highly appreciated the cooperation of the Ukrainian Government and the willingness of the victims to share their experiences, and also expressed regret that Russia left all communications directed to it unanswered.

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