The establishment of a special tribunal for the crime of aggression against Ukraine, including the occupation of Crimea since 2014, is a necessary step to prosecute international crimes that guarantees their non-repetition. This was stated by Ms. Olha Skrypnyk, coordinator of the Expert Network of the International Crimea Platform at the third Summit of the Crimea Platform, stressing the ongoing aggression and human rights violations by Russia in the occupied Crimea.
Ms. Skrypnyk emphasized tragic effects of the Russian aggression in Crimea, starting from the case of Reshat Ametov, a Crimean Tatar activist, cruelly murdered for protests against the occupation. Since then, Russia has introduced a repressive system for persecuting Crimean Tatars and Ukrainians, for suppressing their identity and for eliminating the Orthodox Church of Ukraine.
“Russia has turned Crimea into a military base for an attempt to destroy independent Ukraine. Russia has turned Crimea into a prison, where it holds and tortures Ukrainian citizens both from Crimea and from the newly occupied territories of southern Ukraine, for their resistance. Crimea is an integral part of Ukraine. The situation is absolutely clear: without the liberation of Crimea, we can forget about freedom of navigation in the Black Sea and global food security as well as European security as a whole. The future of a democratic world without terror is ensured only by the heroic resistance of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and the Ukrainian people and the strong support of our partners,” Olha Skrypnyk pointed out.
Ms. Skrypnyk suggested several decisive steps to address the situation. First of all, she called for developing a common safety and security strategy of Black Sea and Sea of Azov to ensure the freedom of navigation, and food security. Another major step would be establishment of a special tribunal for the crime of aggression against Ukraine, including the occupation of Crimea since 2014.
“It is necessary to build up an effective international mechanism to identify civilian hostages, including Crimean ones, to release and return them to the territory controlled by Ukraine; to establish a special tribunal for the crime of aggression against Ukraine, including the occupation of Crimea since 2014, this is a must-do step to prosecute international crimes and ensure their non-repetition; to include the damages caused by the occupation of Crimea in the mechanism of compensation for damages, losses or injuries caused by Russian aggression, and to secure enforcing the right to compensation for victims of international crimes committed by Russia in Crimea,” the human rights activist emphasized.