Since the beginning of the conflict on February 24, over 10,700 crimes have been registered by the office of Ukraine’s Prosecutor General Iryna Venediktova. On Wednesday, the upper house of the Czech Parliament passed a declaration encouraging the government to recognised the suspected war crimes in Ukraine are genocide.
Senator Pavel Fisher said: “We criticise the crimes that Russia troops are committing in this operation, which are war crimes.
“Because they are based on ethnicity, language, affiliation, place of residence, [they] basically bear the hallmarks of genocide.”
The motion was passed by a staggering 55 votes to 1, following similar conclusions by lawmakers in both Estonia and Lithuania, both of whom labelled Russia a “terrorist state”.
Ukraine’s ambassador to the Czech Republic praised senators on Facebook who passed the resolution.
He wrote: “The Czech Senate has just recognised the genocide of the Ukrainian people. Thank you!”
Outside of Europe, Canada is the only other country to recognise the actions of Russia as genocide, with other countries remaining reluctant to do so.
The United Nations defines genocide under the Genocide Convention as a “proven intent of the part of perpetrators to physically destroy a national, ethnical, racial or religious group”.
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Three Russian prisoners of war who have been accused of targeting or murdering civilians, and a soldier who allegedly killed a man and then raped his wife, are the first to appear in a prosecution over war crimes in this conflict.
Ukraine’s Prosecutor General met with Suella Braverman, the UK attorney general in Poland said 36 acknowledged war crimes suspects were currently being prosecuted at differing levels of progress.
Ms Venediktova has expressed her worry that many more war crimes will emerge from this conflict, particularly the territories in the east and south of Ukraine under Russian occupation including Mariupol.