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Council of Europe creates Register of Damage for Russian crimes of aggression in Ukraine

by The Kyiv Independent news desk May 17, 2023 3:30 PM 2 min read
Italy's Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni delivers her speech at the opening of the 4th Summit of the Heads of State and Government of the Council of Europe at the Harpa concert hall in Reykjavik, Iceland, on May 16, 2023. (Photo by John Macdougall/AFP via Getty Images)
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The Council of Europe announced on May 17 that it had established a "Register of Damage" for Russian crimes of aggression in Ukraine.

Forty-three countries and the European Union joined or indicated their intention to join the initiative, according to the press release.

The office of the Register will be located at The Hague with a satellite office in Ukraine. It will serve as "a record of evidence" concerning the damages caused to the victims of Russia's crimes of aggression in Ukraine.

According to the press release, the establishment of the Register "paves the way towards a future international comprehensive compensation mechanism for the victims of the Russian aggression."

"We are grateful to the Council of Europe and all the participating states for such a high level of support. We invite other states, from all corners of the world, to join the Register of Damage as a sign of support for the important issue of Russia's accountability for its war against Ukraine," Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said.

Shmyhal added that the establishment of the Register was followed by the urgent task of making it operational as soon as possible so that "victims of Russian aggression could submit their claims."

The Register is only "the first step" being taken to ensure that Russia will be held accountable for its crimes against Ukraine, Shmyhal said.

Secretary General of the Council of Europe Marija Pejčinović Burić wrote that it was a "historic achievement," adding that "every loss will be counted, every damage will be compensated."

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