Ukraine has experienced “the most terrible war crimes” since the Second World War, says Zelensky

By agency reporters

Ukraine president Volodymyr Zelenskiy has called for the establishment of trials similar to those conducted in Nuremberg after the second World War to prosecute those involved in Russian war crimes in his country.

He told the United Nations Security Council on Tuesday of killings, rape, torture and looting carried out by Russian forces in Ukraine.

Ukraine had experienced “the most terrible war crimes” since the second World War, he said, suggesting the killings seen in the city of Bucha could be replicated elsewhere.

“The Russian military and those who gave them orders must be brought to justice immediately for war crimes in Ukraine. Anyone who has given criminal orders and carried out them by killing our people will be brought before the tribunal, which should be similar to the Nuremberg tribunals.”

Russia rejected the claims as “lies”. Its representative told the council, without any evidence, that Ukrainian civilians had been killed by “radicals” from their own country.

The European Union is set to intensify sanctions against Russia following events in Bucha. It is moving to prohibit Russian coal imports, a trade worth €4 billion annually, and ban transactions with four key Russian banks in a fresh package of sanctions proposed by the commission and which are aimed to come into force on Thursday.

The proposals would bar some Russian vessels from accessing EU ports, hit Russian and Belarussian road transport operators, bar imports from Russia of key goods including cement, seafood and liquor while imposing asset freezes and travel bans on additional individuals.

“These atrocities cannot and will not be left unanswered,” said European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen.

The United States has also signalled that it is working on further sanctions to be applied on Russia. US secretary of state Antony Blinken said the alleged Russian actions in Bucha were a “deliberate campaign to kill, to torture, to rape, to commit atrocities”.

UN secretary general António Guterres warned that the war in Ukraine would hit the developing world hard and that more than 1.2 billion people were particularly vulnerable to spiking food, energy and fertiliser costs.

“We are already seeing some countries move from vulnerability into crisis, and signs of serious social unrest,” he said.

Up to 32,000 arrivals

Meanwhile, in the Republic of Ireland, the Cabinet was told on Tuesday that 26,000-32,000 people from Ukraine are expected to have arrived in Ireland by Easter weekend. A key challenge for the Government will be securing accommodation.

One possibility being examined by officials is that up to 8,000 properties, currently vacant because their owners are in nursing home care under the Fair Deal scheme, could be used to house Ukrainian refugees.

The Government is also in advanced negotiations to use the largest hotel in the State – Citywest in Saggart, Co Dublin – to house Ukrainian refugees for up to two years.

Part of the wider Citywest campus, the Citywest Convention Centre, is already in use as an overflow facility for processing refugees at times when Dublin Airport comes under too much pressure. However, the broader deal is similar to one struck for the Citywest facility at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, Ministers were told on Tuesday.

The Cabinet was briefed that the Department of Equality is now in negotiations with the owners of the 750-bedroom Citywest Hotel in Dublin to use the entire complex. An indemnity, which would cover lost revenue for the hotel arising from the deal, was sought and agreed at Cabinet.

2 comments

  1. Negotiation would and should have been the way forward. But this conflict was no accident. It was planned. So were the sanctions.

    Like Afghanistan before in in the 1980s and 1990s where the US armed the Taliban against the Soviets, or in Yugoslavia where the CIA armed the Kosovo Liberation Army one cannot but help think that Ukraine is caught in the proxy war of geo political politics. East versus West or is it West versus East? But at least God is on our side.

    And now the ordinary Ukrainians, Russians and indeed many others suffer as war and sanctions wreak human chaos and economic misery. But in all this misery there is money too. Money for the corporate arms industries doing a roaring trade. Money for the oil corporates similarly doing a roaring trade.

    And it’s all so simple. That is what wars are about. Will the US and Britain destroy Russia, and maybe the Chinese thereafter, or will will we all be in the grubber either physically or economically

    More weapons Boris Johnson screams, take out Putin our Joe Biden declares, with even our very own Nikla Sturgeon calling for a re think about sending in UK and US war planes. Goodness only knows why they’re not sending in the.nukes. That would show whose got the most testosterone.

    Bit you know what, I think the planners have planned and planned well. A good going proxy conflict in Ukraine will be quite sufficient. Cynical you may say, but is it a wrong assessment.

    Meanwhile the horror of Ukraine continues. Syria, Iraq, Libya , Afghanistan, its just the way of the world and we’ve learned little since WW2 – and in fact, we’ve had troops in action fighting continually since that time.

    It’s heartbreaking, truly heartbreaking, and for many of us, it’s something that happens elsewhere as these tragedies recur again, and again and again.

  2. Come on folks. We want to hear what you have to say on this and so many other matters in The Democrat. Take a few minutes and drop us a line. Let’s not hide our heads in the sand. Editor

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