Those involved in deportation of Ukrainians from occupied territories will be punished - MFA

Those involved in deportation of Ukrainians from occupied territories will be punished - MFA

The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry strongly condemns Russia's deportation of Ukrainian citizens living in the temporarily occupied territories of the Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions of Ukraine.

The ministry said this in a statement posted on its website, Ukrinform reports.

It said that the Russian occupation administration had begun mass forced relocation of residents of the left-bank Kherson region, primarily the Skadovsk and Kakhovka districts, to the territory of the temporarily occupied Crimea or the Russian Federation. Similar deportations are also being carried out by Russia in the Zaporizhzhia, Luhansk and Donetsk regions, as well as in Crimea.

In addition, against the backdrop of ongoing deportations, alarming reports are also circulating about Russian troops mining the Kakhovka hydroelectric power station, the detonation of which could cause a large-scale man-made and humanitarian catastrophe.

"Such actions by Russia grossly violate international law. According to Article 49 of the 1949 Geneva Convention for the Protection of Civilian Population in Time of War, an occupying Power is prohibited from carrying out forced individual or mass resettlement or deportation of protected persons," the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry said.

It added that the deportation of residents of the temporarily occupied south is accompanied by looting by the Russian occupiers of industrial, infrastructural, cultural, educational and medical institutions, as well as private houses and apartments.

In this regard, the ministry noted that Russia's infliction of large-scale humanitarian suffering on innocent children, women and the elderly is a violation of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, as well as the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.

"It is important to recall that war crimes and crimes against humanity have no time limit of liability. All persons in the Russian Federation who are currently committing crimes against the Ukrainian people will inevitably be punished," the statement said.

The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry called on the international community to condemn the Russian Federation for its forced relocation of residents of southern Ukraine, to impose new sanctions on Russia, and to increase military aid to Ukraine for the liberation of its temporarily occupied territories.

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