EconomyCourt for Russia, punishment of traitors, courts during the...

Court for Russia, punishment of traitors, courts during the war. The view of the Office of the President

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The International Court of Justice for the Punishment of Vladimir Putin and Russia’s Supreme Military-Political Leadership for War Crimes in Ukraine is one of the main projects in which Ukraine is currently actively working.

President Volodymyr Zelensky’s team also wants to turn Russia’s frozen assets abroad into compensation for Ukrainians affected by Russia’s actions by setting up a special arbitration.

The Deputy Head of the Office of the President Andriy Smirnov is one of those actively involved in both processes. In addition, as in the pre-war period, he continues to deal with judicial reform in the OP.

He spoke in an interview with Radio Svoboda about current progress on each of the above issues.

Below are the main points of this conversation.

See the full version of the conversation here:

To start the work of the international court and the international arbitration

“Everything will depend on the speed of signing and further implementation and ratification by the partner countries of these international agreements for the establishment of a special criminal court and a compensation committee.

We would like to think that at the end of the summer we will sign and further ratify these documents for both institutes “.

On the volume and value of the frozen assets of the Russian Federation

“We focus primarily on the state capital of the attacking country, because their order is many times (tens, hundreds, thousands of times) longer than the order of the frozen funds of individuals.

A few weeks ago, when we were reducing the amount of confiscated state funds, the amount was, if I am not mistaken, about $ 300 billion.

The amount we will claim for the recovery of frozen assets must correspond to the amount of the losses that are currently being audited.

For the skepticism of the partner countries regarding the establishment of an international arbitration

“Due to the fact that such a story has not yet existed, some countries want to discuss its model first of all in order to have guarantees for themselves that the attacking country will not then turn to international judicial institutions to sue them.

“This skepticism is no longer based on political reasons, but on legal ones.”

For the body that will precede the international court

“We propose to our partners the establishment of an interim Prosecutor’s Office to support the prosecution. This is a prosecutor from Ukraine (but do not confuse it with officials from the Attorney General’s Office).

That is, he must be a recognized expert in the field of international law, with knowledge and skills in understanding war crimes, crimes against humanity, genocide, aggression.

This interim Prosecution should be instructed to organize the work of investigators who will gather evidence and actually file charges in a special criminal court.

“How this prosecutor will be elected, who will elect him, in which competition or not – we are still discussing it.”

For the form of the international court

“We really want the decision of this body to have global power, so the international component is mandatory here (it must be very strongly represented in the work of this court).

The Special Criminal Court will examine the evidence gathered by the prosecutor I mentioned and will present indictment evidence that it will be able to obtain from the national pre-trial bodies, the Ukrainian prosecutor’s office and European bodies involved in the evidence-gathering process.

“We have to prove the crime of the attack through the prism of the responsibility of the president of the attacking country and the military-political leadership of the attacking country.”

On the ratification of the Statute of Rome

“At least during the war, I would postpone the ratification of the Rome Statute until the victory of Ukraine. Because, according to the Rome Statute, the special competent authorities of foreign countries will receive a lot of statements from the attacking country about alleged (I emphasize – allegedly) crimes committed by our military. The same International Criminal Court will be obliged to assess these facts.

Hence the question (Ratification of the Statute of Rome – ed.) suitable for discussion, but after the victory of Ukraine in this war “.

On the readiness of the Ukrainian courts for war

“The judiciary was not ready, but in many cases the judiciary was able to respond quickly to this challenge and much could be done to evacuate judges and court staff from temporarily occupied territories where active hostilities were taking place and in many in some cases he was able to extract the materials of the court cases “.

About the courts that Russia destroyed

“There are cases where it has not been possible to remove material court cases (mainly in the eastern regions), where the courts have been completely destroyed. For example, the Kharkiv Court of Appeal, whose building is an architectural monument, was completely destroyed by bombs and from there, as far as I know, we could not evacuate the materials of the case.

“The court in Borodyanka has been almost completely destroyed, so now we urgently decide which room it will be in.”

About traitorous judges and “quiet” collaborators

“There are cases where judges are essentially betraying the interests of both justice and the state. There are such cases. A case file has been filed for all of them and the investigative actions are in progress.

The issue of “quiet” partners seems much more dangerous. There are several of them. At that time, the judges did not immediately side with the enemy, but waited for “balalaika, bears, the Russian world”. “Specialists are aware of these cases.”

About restarting GRP

“Indeed, we do not have such a tool as the GRP to obtain a license to prosecute judges.

The problem is that during the two months of the war – March and April – the Ethics Council, which was set up with the participation of our international partners, did not work. I can not understand why and what prevented them from working remotely.

We tried to think of options with MEPs on how to start the GRP regarding the possibility of considering sanctions against judges, but we unanimously concluded that all these options would not be in line with the Constitution, so we rejected them.

“But the issue is very acute and I call on the Ethics Council to complete the interviews with the candidates proposed to the High Council of Justice as soon as possible.”

About the UACC project and its liquidation

“From the beginning of the war until mid-April, the OASK had technical problems accessing the register, with the ability to make decisions there, with servers, with technical equipment.

If we are talking about the liquidation of the UACC, this issue should go hand in hand with the issue of the election of new judges in the new District Administrative Court of Kiev (it does not matter what it will be named).

We want VKKS to be released. We insist that GRP will continue its work quickly. And, in the end, you will miss all the questions related to UASK.

On opening a Register of court decisions

“Maybe in a week and a half we will open access to the Register of Judges, so that citizens, government agencies, secretaries of state, notaries and whoever needs it have access.

“But we want to make sure with the State Judicial Administration that this process of restoring access to the register will not hurt, that we will be ready for new cyber attacks in any case.”

About the Constitutional Court

The constitutional reform carried out under Petro Poroshenko created the Constitutional Court as a body generally inviolable compared to any other state body.

“Therefore, I consider this reform to be a shameful phenomenon, which should be reduced and a new reform should be made, in which the necessity of the existence of the Constitutional Court should be reconsidered.”

Russia’s large-scale war against Ukraine

February 24, 2022 Russia Ukraine on land and in the air along the common border. Belarusian territory was used to invade the Kiev region with the aim of occupying the capital. In the south, the Russian army, in particular, occupied part of the Zaporizhia and Kherson regions, and in the north – the Sumy and Chernihiv regions.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has called the full-scale invasion a “special operation.” Initially, its purpose was defined as “demilitarization and demilitarization” – “protection of Donbass”.

Russian authorities say the army is not attacking civilian targets. At the same time, Russian aircraft, missiles, naval and artillery bombs Ukrainian cities daily. Destruction of residential buildings and objects of political infrastructure in Mariupol, Kharkov, Chernihiv, Zhytomyr, Sheverodonetsk, as well as in Kyiv and other cities and villages of Ukraine.

In early April, Ukraine and Western countries estimated Russia’s losses in the war as dead. The Kremlin says the number is ten times lower, although Putin’s spokesman acknowledged the losses were “significant”. In March, Ukraine reported 1,300 deaths. President Zelensky said the ratio of casualties between Ukraine and Russia in this war was “one in ten”.

Unable to overcome the resistance of the Armed Forces, the Russian units survived in early April from the territory of Kiev, Chernihiv and Sumy regions.

After the liberation of Kiev by Russian troops in the cities of Bucha, Irpin, Gostomel and villages in the region, the events of mass killings, torture and civilians, including children, were revealed. Ukrainian authorities have said Russia is committing genocide. Western countries are involved in confirming the massacres. Russia has denied the allegations in a statement issued Friday stating “Similar, baseless allegations concerning Russia’s foreign policy have been made more than once.

Later, the facts of torture and murder of Ukrainian citizens began to be revealed in almost all settlements under Russian occupation.

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights has confirmed 8,628 civilian deaths and injuries in Ukraine since: 3,974 dead (259 children) and 4,654 wounded (402 children). That is from February 24 to midnight on May 24, according to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees.

source: radio svoboda

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