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Ray Bogan

Political Correspondent

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Politics

US signs 8-country agreement to help prosecute Russian war criminals

Mar 06, 2023

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Ray Bogan

Political Correspondent

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Attorney General Merrick Garland signed a new agreement with Ukraine, Lithuania, Poland, Estonia, Latvia, Slovakia and Romania that he said will strengthen efforts to prosecute Russian war criminals. The memorandum will increase information sharing amongst countries that have pledged to assist Ukraine.

The signing came during the United for Justice Conference in Lviv, Ukraine, which brought together prosecutors from around the world.

“Together, American and Ukrainian prosecutors have zeroed in on specific crimes committed by Russian forces, including attacks on civilian targets,” Garland said. “We are working to identify not only the individuals who carried out these attacks, but those who ordered them.” 

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy called Russia a terrorist state and said all murderers and organizers of aggression must be punished

 “The world is strong enough to punish Russia for the war. And we will provide the world with enough courage and tools to make the punishment happen,” Zelenskyy said during an address.

Garland told his international counterparts that they have already begun building cases, conducting interviews, collecting evidence and identifying specific suspects.

Last week, the attorney general told the Senate Judiciary Committee that he believes Yevgeny Prigozhin, the head of the Wagner group, is a war criminal. 

“Mr. Prigozhin who runs this thing is in my view a war criminal. Maybe that’s inappropriate for me to say as a judge before getting all the evidence. But I think we have more than sufficient evidence at this point for me to feel that way,” Garland told the committee. “I believe that group which is responsible for attacks in Ukrainians in the Donbas, including by bringing in prisoners from Russian prison camps as cannon fodder. It’s just unfathomable what they are doing. And everything we can do to stop them we should do. 

Ukraine’s Prosecutor General Andriy Kostin said authorities have registered more than 65,000 war crimes committed by Russia since the war began.

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Attorney General Merrick Garland signed a new agreement with Ukraine, Lithuania, Poland, Estonia, Latvia, Slovakia and Romania that he says will strengthen efforts to prosecute Russian war criminals. 

 

The memorandum will increase information sharing amongst countries that have pledged to assist Ukraine. 

 

The signing came during the United for Justice Conference in Lviv, Ukraine which brought together prosecutors from around the world who are working to collect evidence and build cases against Russian commanders who gave the orders, and the soldiers who carried them out. 

 

During the conference, Ukrainian President Volodymr Zelensky called Russia a terrorist state and said all murderers and organizers of aggression must be punished. 

Zelensky: “The world is strong enough to punish Russia for the war. And we will provide the world with enough courage and tools to make the punishment happen.” 

 

Garland told his international counterparts that they have already begun building cases, conducting interviews, collecting evidence and identifying specific suspects.

 

Last week, The attorney general told the Senate Judiciary Committee that Yevgeny Prigozhin, the head of the Wagner group, is in his view, a war criminal. 

Garland: “I believe that group which is responsible for attacks in Ukrainians in the Donbas, including by bringing in prisoners from RUssian prison camps as cannon fodder. It’s just unfathomable what they are doing. And everything we can do to stop them we should do.” 

 

Ukraine prosecutor general says authorities have registered more than 65,000 war crimes committed by Russia since the war began. Straight from DC, I’m Ray Bogan.