Calls for Russian war crimes probe growing in Ukraine

Russia At War

(NewsNation) — There is mounting global support for an investigation into whether Russia has committed war crimes in its invasion of Ukraine and the International Criminal Court has announced it has begun a probe into Russia’s aggression. 

Support for such an investigation is growing stronger after a Russian airstrike hit a maternity hospital, killing at least three, Wednesday in the southern city of Mariupol.

Oleksandra Matviichuk, Kyiv-based human rights lawyer and civil society leader and chairwoman of the Center of Civil Liberties, believes the attacks on Ukrainian civilians are intentional.

“The Russians are attacking humanitarian corridors to get more casualties and provoke panic,” said Matviichuk.

The humanitarian corridors are meant to give civilians a safe path to escape, but they have been consistently attacked by Russia.

“People have no food, no water, no electricity, no phone connection or medical care,” said Matviichuk. “And Russian doesn’t provide the assistance to reach the cities.”

Matviichuk began documenting Russian war crimes after they invaded Crimea in 2014 and sees similarities in this invasion.

“Russia uses war crimes as a tool of conducting war,” she said. “It’s a deliberate policy. We, unfortunately, expected that in occupied territories.”

But she does see a difference in how the world has united around Ukraine.

“We feel this huge wave of solidarity and it’s encouraged us to fight Russia,” said Matviichuk. “But we need fighter planes, we need air defense systems in order to protect our sky.”

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