President of Ukraine

Andriy Yermak in Babyn Yar discusses implementation of seventh point of Peace Formula regarding restoration of justice with foreign ambassadors

29 September 2023 - 21:17

Andriy Yermak in Babyn Yar discusses implementation of seventh point of Peace Formula regarding restoration of justice with foreign ambassadors

On the instructions of the President of Ukraine, Head of the Office of the President Andriy Yermak held the ninth meeting with representatives of the diplomatic corps accredited in our country regarding the implementation of President Volodymyr Zelenskyy's Peace Formula.

The event was dedicated to the implementation of the seventh point of the Peace Formula "Restoration of Justice." The meeting, which took place at the National Historical Memorial Preserve Babyn Yar, was attended by representatives from 76 countries, both in person and online.

Andriy Yermak said that the meeting was taking place at a location whose name has become a symbol of honoring the memory of genocide victims.

"The Nuremberg Tribunal forever condemned both those who started the world war and those who executed criminal orders," he said.

At the same time, the Head of the Presidential Office reminded that victims of the repressions of the Stalinist regime, including those executed in Kyiv's Bykivnia, are still waiting for justice because the international community has not yet provided proper legal assessment of the actions of this murderous regime, whose descendants continue bringing torture and death.

Andriy Yermak emphasized that the answer to the query of justice is contained in point seven of the Ukrainian Peace Formula, based on international law and the UN Charter.

"The path to ending this war and establishing lasting peace lies only through the complete restoration of justice. Only swift and irrevocable punishment of those responsible for the fundamental crime of aggression and subsequent war crimes, including genocide, will prevent the recurrence of aggressive wars in the future," he said.

Andriy Yermak reminded that significant work had been done over the past year, and important decisions were made at the international level. In particular, the Registry of Damage for Ukraine has already started its work in The Hague, where claims for compensation for damages and evidence of their occurrence are being submitted by those affected by the war.

The Head of the Presidential Office emphasized the need to move forward and implement a compensation mechanism that would enable the collection of reparations from Russia.

"Currently, we are working on proposals for the relevant international agreement. We would appreciate it if your governments would join this work," he said.

Traditionally, a briefing was held for the representatives of the diplomatic corps present, during which the Ukrainian vision for the implementation of the Peace Formula point regarding the establishment of justice was given.

Daria Zarivna, Advisor to the Head of the Office of the President of Ukraine, who moderated the event, said that throughout the war, mass graves of the killed and places of torture are constantly discovered on liberated Ukrainian territories. Therefore, the issue of justice is the cornerstone of the Peace Formula and a necessary condition for achieving a truly sustainable, fair, and comprehensive peace.

Ukraine's Minister of Foreign Affairs Dmytro Kuleba emphasized that all those guilty of war crimes against Ukrainians must be held accountable without exception. According to him, there is no alternative to an international tribunal that will establish Russia's guilt.

"Ukrainians and the entire world demand justice, which must prevail through joint efforts. We must act now to prevent such crimes in the future," he said.

Prosecutor General Andriy Kostin presented a work plan for point seven of the Peace Formula, designed for 2023-2026.

He said that point seven of the Peace Formula relies on pillars such as ensuring effective investigations at the national level, ensuring accountability for the crime of aggression, strategic partnership with international justice mechanisms, and promoting bilateral and multilateral intergovernmental partnerships for the investigation and prosecution of international crimes.

Another fundamental issue is the compensation and restitution for the damage caused to Ukraine and Ukrainians by Russian aggression.

Deputy Minister of Justice of Ukraine Iryna Mudra said that Russia's frozen sovereign assets in Western jurisdictions and funds of sanctioned Russian businessmen and oligarchs should become an important source of payment for compensation mechanisms. Work is underway to implement the corresponding action plan.

Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Finance of Canada Chrystia Freeland said during her online speech at the meeting that her country has already legislated the ability to direct confiscated sanctioned Russian assets to support Ukraine and is ready to share the relevant experience with other states.

Lawrence Summers, an American economist and the honorary rector of Harvard University, emphasized the importance of timely consensus decisions today. He stated that from the perspective of international law, it is entirely legitimate to use Russian assets for Ukraine's economic recovery and to support the victims of Russian aggression.

Deputy Head of the Office of the President of Ukraine Andriy Smyrnov told the diplomats about the search for the optimal format for a special international tribunal for the crime of aggression against Ukraine.

Ambassador at Large of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Anton Korynevych informed about the activities of the Core Group on the establishment of a tribunal for the crime of aggression against Ukraine, which has already involved 38 states.

Representatives of the foreign diplomatic corps expressed their views on the importance of justice and the work that Ukraine, together with its partners, is undertaking to implement the relevant point of the Peace Formula.

At the end of the meeting, Andriy Yermak thanked all the participants and announced that preparations have already begun for the next meeting of national security advisors and political directors of foreign ministries of the world's states regarding the key principles of achieving a sustainable and just peace for Ukraine.