Foreign Minister Hoekstra in Ukraine for the start of war crimes consultation group

Minister Wopke Hoekstra (Foreign Affairs) participated in the start of a new consultation on the war in Ukraine. The idea is that all countries, organizations and authorities involved can reach better agreements on investigating and prosecuting crimes that have been committed.

Agreements on the new Dialogue Group on Accountability for Ukraine were reached last year at a summit in The Hague. In addition to the Netherlands, the group includes Ukraine, the International Criminal Court, and the European Union. Now that the group has been officially launched, the first meetings are expected to take place in April.

At the July summit, there was agreement that better arrangements are needed to bring human rights abuses and violations of humanitarian law to justice. This relates, for example, to the collection of evidence.

Hoekstra spoke in Ukraine to President Volodimir Zelensky about crimes committed by Russians in that country. “The murders, the sexual violence, the attacks on civilian infrastructure, the systematic kidnapping of Ukrainian children,” the minister summed up in his speech. “All war crimes and crimes against humanity must be investigated and punished according to international standards.”

According to the Dutch foreign minister, this consultation group should bring more “coordination and oversight.” In addition to representatives of the International Criminal Court and the EU, a representative of the Ukrainian government always participates in the various consultations.

It was previously announced that the International Center for the Prosecution of Crimes of Aggression will be established in The Hague. In addition, a register of damage caused by the war is being kept in the Netherlands in cooperation with Ukraine and other European countries.

Reporting by ANP

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