Zanda Kalniņa-Lukaševica in Strasbourg: Establishment of an international tribunal will eliminate illusion of impunity in Russia


“Our response to Russian aggression in Ukraine must prevent any evil illusion of impunity. Otherwise, it may create new wars and violent crises,” stressed Zanda Kalniņa-Lukaševica, Deputy Speaker of the Saeima, Head of the Latvian Delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), on Thursday, 26 January, in Strasbourg.

Important steps have already been taken to document international crimes and human rights violations committed by Russia. The evidence gathered shows that the crimes committed by Russian soldiers in Ukraine include torture, mass killings, abduction of civilians, filtration camps, deportation, illegal relocation of children to Russia and transfer for adoption, as well as rape and sexual violence, underlined Z.Kalniņa-Lukaševica, participating in the PACE debate on the legal and human rights aspects of the Russian aggression in Ukraine.

In order to ensure that Russia is held accountable for the crimes of its aggression against Ukraine, immediate and unified national action is needed, stressed the Head of the Latvian delegation.

“It is of utmost importance that the full spectrum of accountability is covered. Therefore, there is an urgent need to establish a special international tribunal on the crime of aggression in order to complement existing mechanisms and to ensure that Russia is held fully accountable for violations of international rules and its aggression against Ukraine,” underlined Z.Kalniņa-Lukaševica.

The Council of Europe, together with others, should support Ukraine as long as necessary — until Ukraine’s victory and restoration of justice, stressed the Head of the Latvian delegation and called for the support of the resolution.

The PACE unanimously approved a resolution on the legal and human rights aspects of Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, following an extensive debate expressing its broadest support for Ukraine. The institution representing 46 European national parliaments emphasises the seriousness of the crimes of aggression committed by Russia and calls for the establishment of an international tribunal. The resolution also states that the Russian Federation must compensate the damage caused by aggression, which is why the Assembly calls for the establishment of an international compensation mechanism, including a special compensation fund.

The 2023 winter session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, with the participation of the 14th Saeima PACE delegation for the first time, takes place from 23 to 27 January in Strasbourg, France.


Saeima Press Service

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