Ukraine files lawsuit against Russia at ICJ
Ukraine, on Saturday, the 26 February 2022, filed an application instituting proceeding against the Russian Federation before the International Court of Justice (ICJ), the principal judicial organ of the United Nations, concerning “a dispute . . . relating to the interpretation, application and fulfilment of the 1948 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide” (the “Genocide Convention”).
The ICJ, in a press release issued on Sunday, said Ukraine in its application contends, inter alia, that “the Russian Federation has falsely claimed that acts of genocide have occurred in the Luhansk and Donetsk oblasts of Ukraine, and on that basis recognized the so-called ‘Donetsk People’s Republic’ and ‘Luhansk People’s Republic’, and then declared and implemented a ‘special military operation’ against Ukraine”.
Ukraine “emphatically denies” that such genocide has occurred and states that it submitted the Application “to establish that Russia has no lawful basis to take action in and against Ukraine for the purpose of preventing and punishing any purported genocide”.
In the Application, Ukraine also accuses the Russian Federation of “planning acts of genocide in Ukraine” and contends that Russia “is intentionally killing and inflicting serious injury on members of the Ukrainian nationality the actus reus of genocide under Article II of the [Genocide] Convention”.
The Applicant seeks to found the Court’s jurisdiction on Article 36, paragraph 1, of the Statute of the Court and on Article IX of the Genocide Convention, to which both States are parties.
Together with the Application, Ukraine filed a Request for the indication of provisional measures, pursuant to Article 41 of the Statute of the Court and Articles 73, 74 and 75 of the Rules of Court, in which it requests the Court to indicate provisional measures “in order to prevent irreparable prejudice to the rights of Ukraine and its people and to avoid aggravating or extending the dispute between the parties under the Genocide Convention”.
Pursuant to Article 74 of the Rules of Court, “[a] request for the indication of provisional measures shall have priority over all other cases”.
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