05/04/2022

U.N. rights chief says Bucha dead raise possible war crimes questions

According to Michelle Bachelet, the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, the recent discovery of dead civilians in the Ukrainian town of Bucha raised questions about possible war crimes committed by the Russian troops. Independent and effective investigations into what happened in Bucha are necessary to identify any breaches of international humanitarian law and violations of international human rights law.


Source: Reuters

05/04/2022

Russia threatens to fine Wikipedia if it doesn’t delete ‘false information’

Roskomnadzor, the Russian communications regulator, stated it wanted Wikipedia to remove "material with inaccurate information of public interest" about the "special operation" in Ukraine and the actions of Russia's troops. The Russian law provides that if the owner of an Internet page does not delete illegal information when asked to do so, it can receive a fine of up to 4 million roubles ($48,120.30).


Source: Reuters

05/04/2022

Germany to prosecute use of ‘Z’ symbol to support Russia’s war

The German interior ministry said there is a plan to prosecute people who display the "Z" symbol associated with support for Russia in the war in Ukraine. According to the criminal code, people in Germany could be fined or jailed for up to three years when using symbols of "unconstitutional organisations" such as the Nazi swastika. Many questioned how the measure could be implemented and accused the German government of tokenism.


Source: politico.eu

05/04/2022

Dutch MPs call for Russian asset seizures after appeal by Ukraine’s Zelensky

After an appeal from Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to the Dutch parliament, Dutch lawmakers asked to speed up the implementation of sanctions against Russia, as the country was shamefully behind other countries in freezing targeted assets. Approximately 27 billion euros in Russian assets were registered in the Netherlands, often in shell companies.


Source: Reuters

13/04/2022

U.N. General Assembly Votes to Suspend Russia from Human Rights Council

On 6th April 2022, the General Assembly of the U.N. voted to suspend Russia from the Human Rights Council. For a country to be suspended from the HRC, a vote of two-thirds of the assembly members is required. In the case of Russia, 93 member states voted in favour of a resolution to suspend Russia, 24 voted against, and 58 abstained.


Source: nationalreview.com

13/04/2022

Ukraine to create special justice mechanism to investigate crimes of Russian invaders

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has announced he plans to create a special justice mechanism in Ukraine “to investigate and prosecute every crime of the occupiers on the territory of our state”. This mechanism will be based on the joint work of national and international specialists, such as investigators, prosecutors, and judges.

Source: Interfax

13/04/2022

EU chief promises speeded up process for Ukraine to seek membership

Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, has promised to offer Ukrainian President Zelenskiy a speedier start to Ukraine's request to become a member of the European Union. Talking about a questionnaire she gave to Zelenskiy to decide on Ukraine's membership she added that "It will not as usual be a matter of years to form this opinion, but I think a matter of weeks” and that “Ukraine is marching towards the European future”.

Source: Reuters

13/04/2022

Russia revokes registrations of pro-democracy, human rights groups

Russia has recently revoked the registration of 15 foreign organisations, including Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch (HRW), due to "violations of the current legislation of the Russian Federation". HRW has been operating in Russia for 30 years, while AI has had a presence in the country since 1993. Human Rights Watch promised it will continue to work in Russia. Amnesty’s secretary-general said they will redouble “efforts to expose Russia's egregious human rights violations both at home and abroad”.

Source: RFE/RL

13/04/2022

European Commission launches rule-of-law disciplinary procedure against Hungary

After nationalist prime minister, Viktor Orbán, won a fourth victory in parliamentary elections, the European Commission launched the new rule-of-law disciplinary procedure against Hungary. It aims to prevent the misuse of EU funds by countries backsliding on the rule of law and failing to meet democratic standards. This decision could make it harder for Hungary to borrow money.

Source: The Guardian