Accessibility links

Breaking News

ICC Joins 3 Countries in Probing Possible Russian War Crimes in Ukraine

A family mourns a relative killed during the war with Russia, as dozens of black bags containing more bodies of victims are seen strewn across the graveyard in the cemetery in Bucha, in the outskirts of Kyiv, Ukraine, April 11, 2022.

The International Criminal Court said Monday that for the first time it will be part of a multination investigative team to probe whether Russia committed war crimes during its two-month invasion of Ukraine.

ICC prosecutor Karim Khan and prosecutors general from Lithuania, Poland and Ukraine signed an agreement to jointly conduct the investigation, the European Union Agency for Criminal Justice Cooperation (Eurojust) said.

"With this agreement, parties are sending a clear message that all efforts will be undertaken to effectively gather evidence on core international crimes committed in Ukraine and bring those responsible to justice," Eurojust said in a statement.

Lithuania, Poland and Ukraine signed an agreement last month to exchange information about suspected war crimes and crimes against humanity during Russia's assault on Ukraine.

Khan had already opened an ICC investigation early last month into possible war crimes committed in Ukraine after several of the court's member states requested an investigation.

Several early investigations of Russian actions in Ukraine focused on civilian deaths, such as the massacre of hundreds of residents in Bucha and other suburbs near the capital of Kyiv, before Russia moved troops to focus their assault on eastern Ukraine.

The United Nations says nearly 2,000 Ukrainian civilians had been killed as of mid-April. Russia has denied targeting civilians.