MEPs push for special tribunal to punish Russian crimes in Ukraine

European lawmakers on Thursday voted to demand the establishment of a special international tribunal to prosecute Russia’s political and military leaders and their allies for crimes committed in Ukraine.

Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) during a voting session in Strasbourg, France, January 17, 2023.

Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) during a voting session in Strasbourg, France, January 17, 2023.Photo: EPA/JULIEN WARNAND

In a resolution adopted with 472 votes in favour, 19 against with 33 abstentions, members of the European Parliament (MEPs) demanded that the Russian political and military leadership be held accountable for the crime of aggression against Ukraine.

The resolution said that „the atrocities committed by Russian forces in Bucha, Irpin and many other Ukrainian towns reveal the brutality of the war and underscore the importance of coordinated international action to bring those accountable to justice under international law,” according to the European Parliament’s website.

In their resolution, MEPs urged the EU to push for the creation of a special tribunal „in close cooperation with Ukraine and the international community.”

EU lawmakers said on Thursday that „establishing a tribunal would fill a vacuum in international criminal justice and complement the investigative efforts of the International Criminal Court.”

The resolution added that the tribunal must have jurisdiction to investigate not only Russian President Vladimir Putin and the political and military leadership of Russia, but also Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko „and his cronies,” the EU legislature said on its website.

MEPs also said in their resolution that „it is no longer feasible” for Russia under Putin’s leadership „to return to business as usual” with the West, according to the europarl.europa.eu website.

’I call on all our partners to support such a tribunal’: Ukraine’s Zelensky

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky welcomed the vote in a tweet, calling on „all our partners to support such a tribunal.”

„Russia must be held accountable for its war of aggression and justice must prevail,” Zelensky said.

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Source: PAPeuroparl.europa.euukrinform.net

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