Nuremberg trials as a model: Kyiv wants a tribunal for Russian war criminals

Nuremberg trials as a model
Kyiv wants tribunal for Russian war criminals

After World War II, the Allies put high-ranking Nazis on trial. The trial of the major war criminals in Nuremberg is considered the first international criminal trial in history. Ukraine now wants a similar tribunal for Russian war criminals.

The Ukrainian Attorney General Andriy Kostin is calling for an international special tribunal for war crimes based on the Nuremberg trials of 1945. “This special tribunal should be based on a multilateral international treaty. Eight countries already support this – we are also in talks with representatives of Germany and France. It could work in a similar way to the Nuremberg war crimes trials after the end of the Second World War,” Kostin told the Funke media group and the French newspaper Ouest-France.

For such a special tribunal, Ukraine already has support through resolutions of the EU Parliament and the NATO Parliamentary Assembly. “Now we are working on approval by the UN General Assembly.”

“Atrocities against civilians are part of war tactics”

Kostin told the newspapers that there had been a “dramatic increase” in sexual violence by Russian soldiers. As a result of the Russian war of aggression, all genders and age groups are affected, children as well as the elderly, said Kostin. Russian soldiers used sexual violence in a targeted manner – as a “war method to humiliate Ukrainians”. Four months ago, only 40 cases of sexual violence were registered, but now there are more than 110 cases. “Strongly increasing trend.” There is also a high number of unreported cases.

“In many cases, people are raped, tortured and then killed by Russian soldiers. Rapes often take place in front of relatives and children,” said Kostin. Occupied areas are particularly affected. According to Kostin, Russian commanders often ordered rapes or at least supported them. The information provided by the Attorney General could not initially be independently verified.

The Germany director of the human rights organization Human Rights Watch, Wenzel Michalski, also spoke of a system of violence. “Atrocities against civilians are part of the Russian soldiers’ war tactics in Ukraine,” Michalski told the newspapers of the Funke media group. “The violence of the soldiers, including rapes, is not punished by the top Russian politicians and the military. On the contrary: forces that act particularly brutally are still awarded,” he said.

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