Ukraine crisis: Russia officially accused of war crimes by US

Ukraine crisis: Russia officially accused of war crimes by US. Credit: YouTube

Ukraine crisis: Russia is officially accused of war crimes by the US.

RUSSIA has officially been accused of war crimes in Ukraine by the US on Wednesday, March 23.

An address from Secretary of State Antony Blinken stated that Russian forces “have committed war crimes in Ukraine” after “assessments based on careful reviews of available information from public and intelligence sources.”

“Today, I can announce that, based on information currently available, the U.S. government assesses that members of Russia’s forces have committed war crimes in Ukraine,” said Mr Blinken.

“Our assessment is based on a careful review of available information from public and intelligence sources. As with any alleged crime, a court of law with jurisdiction over the crime is ultimately responsible for determining criminal guilt in specific cases.

“The U.S. government will continue to track reports of war crimes and will share information we gather with allies, partners, and international institutions and organisations, as appropriate. We are committed to pursuing accountability using every tool available, including criminal prosecutions.”

The Secretary of State’s announcement comes as US President Joe Biden makes his way to Europe for a NATO summit.

“Since launching his unprovoked and unjust war of choice, Russian President Vladimir Putin has unleashed unrelenting violence that has caused death and destruction across Ukraine,” he continued.

“We’ve seen numerous credible reports of indiscriminate attacks and attacks deliberately targeting civilians, as well as other atrocities. Russia’s forces have destroyed apartment buildings, schools, hospitals, critical infrastructure, civilian vehicles, shopping centres, and ambulances, leaving thousands of innocent civilians killed or wounded.

“Many of the sites Russia’s forces have hit have been clearly identifiable as in-use by civilians. This includes the Mariupol maternity hospital, as the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights expressly noted in a March 11 report. It also includes a strike that hit a Mariupol theatre, clearly marked with the word “дети” — Russian for “children” — in huge letters visible from the sky.

“Putin’s forces used these same tactics in Grozny, Chechnya, and Aleppo, Syria, where they intensified their bombardment of cities to break the will of the people. Their attempt to do so in Ukraine has again shocked the world and, as President Zelenskyy has soberly attested, “bathed the people of Ukraine in blood and tears.”

As reported by the Daily Mail, US officials initially avoided being drawn into assessments of whether Russia was committing war crimes, however, the killings in Mariupol are believed to have been the turning point.

Blinken said: “Every day that Russia’s forces continue their brutal attacks, the number of innocent civilians killed and wounded, including women and children, climbs.

“As of March 22, officials in besieged Mariupol said that more than 2,400 civilians had been killed in that city alone. Not including the Mariupol devastation, the United Nations has officially confirmed more than 2,500 civilian casualties, including dead and wounded, and emphasises the actual toll is likely higher.”

Biden will join the extraordinary NATO summit on March 24 to discuss Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The summit was announced by NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg on March 16.

I have convened an extraordinary Summit on March 24 at NATO HQ,” a statement from Nato’s Secretary-General said at the time.

“We will address Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, our strong support for Ukraine, and further strengthening NATO’s deterrence & defence. At this critical time, North America and Europe must continue to stand together,” Stoltenberg said.

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Written by

Matthew Roscoe

Originally from the UK, Matthew is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]