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Joint Statement of the Group of Friends of Accountability Following the Aggression Against Ukraine
September 26, 2023

The United States Joined the Following Joint Statement at the 54th Session of the Human Rights Council

Interactive Dialogue with the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Ukraine

54th Session of UN Human Rights Council

Joint Statement of the Group of Friends of Accountability Following the Aggression Against Ukraine

Delivered by the Delegation of Denmark – Chargé d’Affaires Anne Bækkel Kjær

Mr. President, Mr Chair,

I am pleased to deliver this statement on behalf of the ‘Group of Friends of Accountability following the aggression against Ukraine’.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights is clear ‘No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.’

This prohibition on torture applies at all times, in all circumstances.

But even as we are commemorating the 75th anniversary of the UDHR this year, countless Ukrainians have suffered torture and other grievous acts at the hands of the Russian authorities[1], depriving Ukrainians of their inherent dignity and their aspiration to live free from fear.

We say to these survivors, we see you. We stand with you.

Mr. Chair,

Your reporting is clear.

The Commission has found a widespread pattern of torture and inhuman treatment committed by Russian authorities, which may amount to crimes against humanity.

You have gathered evidence that a wide range of grave human rights and humanitarian law violations, many amounting to war crimes, have been committed[2].

Impunity for international crimes is not an option.

We will continue to seek full accountability, including for the crime of aggression. Because victims deserve justice.

We, therefore, welcome the reporting of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Ukraine, the work of the UN Human Rights Monitoring Mission in Ukraine and relevant UN Special Procedure mandate holders, the investigation by the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court into the Situation in Ukraine, the operationalization of the International Centre for the Prosecution of the Crime of Aggression against Ukraine, the establishment of the Register of Damage for Ukraine, and the work of the Core Group towards a tribunal on the crime of aggression against Ukraine.

Thank you, Mr. President.

Members of the Group of Friends of Accountability Following the Aggression Against Ukraine

  1. Albania
  2. Australia
  3. Austria
  4. Belgium
  5. Bosnia-Herzegovina
  6. Bulgaria
  7. Canada
  8. Colombia
  9. Croatia
  10. Cyprus
  11. Czech Republic
  12. Denmark
  13. Estonia
  14. Finland
  15. France
  16. Georgia
  17. Germany
  18. Greece
  19. Guatemala
  20. Iceland
  21. Ireland
  22. Italy
  23. Japan
  24. Latvia
  25. Liechtenstein
  26. Lithuania
  27. Luxembourg
  28. Malta
  29. Republic of the Marshall Islands
  30. Moldova
  31. Montenegro
  32. Kingdom of the Netherlands
  33. New Zealand
  34. North Macedonia
  35. Norway
  36. Poland
  37. Portugal
  38. Republic of Korea
  39. Romania
  40. Slovakia
  41. Slovenia
  42. Spain
  43. Sweden
  44. Switzerland
  45. Ukraine
  46. United Kingdom
  47. United States
  48. EU Delegation

[1] A/HRC/52/CRP.4, o.a. para 58, 60,

[2] A/HRC/52/CRP.4  p.1