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President's Office dpty head, delegation of Amnesty International discuss creation of intl tribunal for Russia's crimes

KYIV. May 5 (Interfax-Ukraine) – Deputy Head of the President’s Office of Ukraine Andriy Smyrnov met with a delegation of the international non-governmental human rights organization Amnesty International headed by Secretary General Agnès Callamard.

"The Deputy Head of the President’s Office said Ukraine needs strong support from the international community in documenting war crimes committed by Russia on the territory of our state. According to him, the International Criminal Court is already investigating cases that examine evidence of Russian crimes during the war in Ukraine, but the inevitability of punishment for officials of the aggressor country should also be inevitable," the presidential press service said.

Smyrnov noted the importance of creating a special criminal international tribunal that would be able to quickly assess the evidence of the crimes of Russian aggression against Ukraine.

"Active multi-level consultations continue at various international platforms on the need to create and launch a mechanism for such a tribunal," he said.

He also said that last week the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe approved two resolutions calling for the creation of an international tribunal.

"The representation of Ukraine at the level of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Justice, the President’s Office is involved in the negotiation process with the allied countries, with which the model and forms of work of such a tribunal are being discussed," Smyrnov said.

"Considering the obviousness of all the signs of aggression, all the evidence that the civilized world has seen, of what terrible crimes the aggressor country resorts to – Russia, in my opinion, an assessment of this fact should be given as soon as possible. And all the military-political leadership of the country – the aggressor must bear strict and inescapable responsibility for this," he said.

He said that among the issues discussed was the location of such a tribunal.

"We are for it to be located in Ukraine. In Bucha, Irpin, Borodianka or Kyiv. Ukraine is ready to provide full technical and organizational support for the work of such a tribunal," Smyrnov said.

He said that now the new tribunal should not be overloaded with a large number of competencies in order to avoid a conflict of jurisdictions with other international judicial institutions. However, time will have to show how quickly the existing international institutions will be able to evaluate the compelling evidence of Russian war crimes against Ukraine and its citizens.

"The society of Ukraine, its citizens tortured by Russian war criminals, all those who have experienced any form of suffering as a result of Russia’s war against Ukraine, Ukrainian business has been destroyed – everyone is waiting for an answer to these questions. And this legal assessment must be given within a reasonable time, politically, in a global context, and legally – in a judicial one," Smyrnov said.

Kallamar, in turn, said Amnesty International strives to focus the attention of as many countries as possible on the problem of the war in Ukraine. In particular, the organization plans to interact with representatives of the media and civil society.