All evidence against Russia, including that collected by ICMP, to be used in court - Commissioner

All evidence against Russia, including that collected by ICMP, to be used in court - Commissioner

All evidence, in particular facts established with the help of the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP), will be used in the International Criminal Court (ICC) and other relevant authorities to bring Russian perpetrators to justice.

That’s according to Artur Dobroserdov, Commissioner for Persons Gone Missing Under Special Circumstances, who spoke in an exclusive comment to an Ukrinform correspondent in The Hague.

"In the end, all the evidence collected, including with the help of the ICMP, will be used in the International Criminal Court (ICC) and other relevant authorities to bring Russian perpetrators to accountability and assign them a fair punishment," he said.

He also noted that the ICMP is currently supporting Ukraine in a large-scale campaign to identify human remains at its DNA labs in The Hague, and will continue to provide assistance to Ukraine in building comprehensive capabilities that include a DNA-based identification process.

Read also: Ukraine contacts over 2,000 children illegally removed by Russia - Commissioner

"Currently, the troublesome process of identification of bodies and remains, documentation and investigation of Russia-perpetrated war crimes, crimes against humanity, aggression against Ukraine and the deliberate genocide of the Ukrainian nation and the Ukrainian people as a whole is ongoing," he said.

Dobroserdov emphasized that International Humanitarian Law requires parties to armed conflicts to facilitate the investigation as regards persons who have gone missing amid hostilities.

"Article 3 of the Constitution of Ukraine stipulates that a person, their life and health, honor and dignity, inviolability and safety shall be recognized as the highest social value in Ukraine.

According to Part 1 Article 5 of the law, a person who has disappeared under special circumstances is entitled to all the rights guaranteed by the Constitution and laws of Ukraine, and also has the right to a comprehensive investigation into the circumstances of their disappearance and an effort to locate them.

“The government is obliged to take all possible measures to search for a person who has gone missing under special circumstances,” the Commissioner emphasized.

It is worth noting that the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) is the only intergovernmental organization that deals exclusively with the issue of missing persons.

ICMP engages with governments, civil society organizations, judicial institutions, international organizations and families around the world to address the issue.

"If we talk about the work practice of the ICMP, in particular in its participation in documenting the Srebrenica Genocide, which was the deliberate and organized killing of Bosnian Muslim men and boys in July 1995 in and around the city of Srebrenica, it should be noted that thanks to the help from the ICMP and the innovative use of DNA, the authorities of Bosnia and Herzegovina managed to identify 75% of the persons who went missing during that conflict," he said.

Dobroserdov also emphasized that ICMP’s DNA tests and relevant evidence were showcased at the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in The Hague and at war crimes trials in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The ICMP assists judicial institutions, including international and national judiciaries, by providing expert evidence and other specialized forensic examinations, including testimony, reports, and depositions.

The ICMP has testified about its archaeological and human identification work in numerous cases heard by national and international courts.

As reported earlier, on May 29, 2024, the Memorandum was signed on cooperation between the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the ICMP.

The agreement will allow the ICMP to expand its assistance to support Ukraine in locating tens of thousands of persons who have gone missing during the war and investigating their disappearances in accordance with international standards. The Ministry of Internal Affairs is the main body in Ukraine for resolving issues related to persons who have gone missing under special circumstances.

According to the agreement, the ICMP will support the ministry’s efforts to collect reference DNA samples from Ukrainian families of missing persons with their informed consent. DNA profiles generated from these samples can be compared in a special database with DNA profiles of unidentified human remains.

While citing and using any materials on the Internet, links to the website not lower than the first paragraph are mandatory. In addition, citing the translated materials of foreign media outlets is possible only if there is a link to the website and the website of a foreign media outlet. Materials marked as "Advertisement" or with a disclaimer reading "The material has been posted in accordance with Part 3 of Article 9 of the Law of Ukraine "On Advertising" No. 270/96-VR of July 3, 1996 and the Law of Ukraine "On the Media" No. 2849-Х of March 31, 2023 and on the basis of an agreement/invoice.

© 2015-2024 Ukrinform. All rights reserved.

Extended searchHide extended search
By period: