Public hearings in Ukraine v. Russia case end in ICJ

Public hearings in Ukraine v. Russia case end in ICJ

The public hearings in Ukraine v. Russia case in the International Court of Justice have ended today.

As an Ukrinform correspondent reports from The Hague, Deputy Foreign Minister of Ukraine Olena Zerkal and Ukrainian Ambassador to the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Vsevolod Chentsov spoke to journalists after the court hearing.

"We told the Court what facts Russia mispresented. We told how incorrectly they represented the facts about the bombings, what happened in Mariupol, we told that they were shelling exactly the residential area, people, civilians in order to intimidate them. We also talked about MH17 and that Russia must be held liable for all those actions. Moreover, we said that their attitude towards the Crimean Tatars and Ukrainians is not just racial discrimination as they annihilate Crimean Tatars and Ukrainians in Crimea. We also paid attention to all legal nuances related to the incorrect interpretation of legal positions which Russia outlined on Monday and yesterday," Zerkal commented.

Russia drags the process out and does not want to bear responsibility, the deputy minister stressed.

In turn, Ambassador Chentsov added that Russia did not comply with the ruling of the International Court of Justice on provisional measures adopted two years ago.

"We also drew the court's attention to the fact that Russia had not enforced the judgment on provisional measures. It concerned the restoration of activity of the Mejlis and compliance with the agreements within the framework of the Minsk process and issuance of passports... Such actions of Russia show that it only worsens the situation," Chentsov noted.

As reported, on June 3-7, the International Court of Justice in The Hague holds the public hearings over the application of the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism and the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination in Ukraine v. Russia case.

At the end of this week, the Court will decide whether it has jurisdiction over all the violations filed by Ukraine and then will deliver an order. The order on jurisdiction is expected to be delivered by the end of the year.

If the arguments of Ukraine convince the International Court of Justice, it will be able to proceed to the consideration of the case on merits.

On January 16, 2017, Ukraine filed a lawsuit against Russia with the International Court of Justice. The charges brought against Russia include: the provision of weapons and other forms of assistance to illegal armed groups; shooting down the Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 (MH17); shelling residential areas of Mariupol and Kramatorsk in Donetsk region; destruction of a civilian passenger bus near Volnovakha in Donetsk region; explosion during a peaceful assembly in Kharkov which caused human fatalities; discrimination against the Ukrainian and Crimean Tatar communities; the prohibition of activity of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people, waves of disappearances, murders, unauthorized searches, detentions; restrictions on teaching in the Ukrainian and Crimean Tatar languages.

The first hearing was held on March 6, 2017. On April 19, 2017, the order on provisional measures was delivered. The International Court of Justice in The Hague ruled that Russia should resume the activities of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people, ensure accessibility of education in Crimea in the Ukrainian language.


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