International Centre for the Investigation of Crimes of Russian Aggression to Open in the Hague before Summer

Monday, 6 March 2023

The International Centre for the Investigation of Crimes of Russian Aggression against Ukraine should start working in The Hague in late spring.

As Christian Wigand, the spokesman of the European Commission, said, the center will store and analyse evidence for future trials, whether national or international.

The centre will unite prosecutors to prepare future cases for the prosecution of the crime of aggression against Ukraine.

The European Commission points out that the evidence of the crime of aggression will be stored in a safe place.

As reported, Joint Investigation Team has been set up with the support of Eurojust to collect evidence and investigate core international crimes committed in Ukraine. The Joint Investigation Team consists of the International Criminal Court, Ukraine, and Lithuania, Poland, Estonia, Latvia, Slovakia, Romania.

The Eurojust Regulation was amended to give the Agency the legal possibility to securely preserve, store and analyse evidence on core international crimes. The judicial database was launched in February 2023.

The International Criminal Court (ICC) is competent to prosecute the most serious international crimes such as genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. It is also competent to prosecute the crime of aggression but only in relation to those countries that have accepted its jurisdiction in relation to this crime. The crime of aggression is a crime committee by the highest political and military leadership.

Given that Russia does not accept the jurisdiction of the ICC, and therefore the ICC cannot exercise this competency in the context of Russia's war against Ukraine. To close this gap, in November 2022 the European Commission presented different options to Member States to make sure that Russian individuals are held accountable for the atrocities committed in Ukraine.

As reported, Ukraine with its allies and partners has developed three models for a special tribunal (Ukr) regarding the crime of Russian aggression.

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