The Hague | Russia refused to appear before the International Court of Justice on Monday, in a procedure initiated by Ukraine, which is asking the United Nations’ highest court to order Moscow to halt its invasion.
• Read also: [EN DIRECT] 12And the War Day in Ukraine: Here are all the developments
• Read also: [EN IMAGES] Watch the Ukrainian cities before and after the bombings
• Read also: Ukraine refuses to evacuate to Russia and prepares for new attacks
The judge of the court, sitting in The Hague, Netherlands, criticized the absence of Russia, as well as by the Ukrainian delegation, which found itself in front of empty seats when it came to pleading in his case.
Joan Donneau, the court’s president, declared that the ICJ “regrets that the Russian Federation did not appear during these oral proceedings,” noting that Alexander Chulguin, the Russian ambassador to the Netherlands, where the court is holding, had told her that Moscow “did not intend to participate.”
“The fact that the seats that were supposed to be occupied by Russia are empty says a lot,” said Anton Kornevich, a member of the Ukrainian delegation.
“They are not here before this court, they are on the battlefields, waging a fierce war against my country,” Mr. Korynevich added. This is how Russia resolves its differences.
Kyiv submitted an application to the International Court of Justice on February 26, a few days after the start of the Russian offensive. Ukraine is asking the United Nations’ highest court to take urgent action ordering Russia to halt its invasion, before deciding on the merits of the case, which could take years.
The judge said the International Court of Justice would rule on Ukraine’s request “as soon as possible”.
Anton Kornevich said the ICJ, which had set hearings on Tuesday to hear Russia’s arguments, had a “responsibility to act”.
“Russia must be stopped, and the Court has a role to play in stopping that,” he said, while outside in front of the headquarters of the International Court of Justice, a few dozen Ukrainian citizens gathered chanting “Stop Putin, stop the war” and “Stop.” Genocide “.
“Put your weapons down.”
During his speech announcing military intervention in Ukraine, Russian President Vladimir Putin said he wanted to defend the Russian-speaking population from genocide committed by the Kyiv regime.
A ridiculous and strange lie, according to Ukraine, which categorically denies the occurrence of such genocide and considers the Russian invasion to be without any legal basis.
“Putin is lying and the Ukrainians are dying,” said Anton Kornevich.
“Russia’s lie is more offensive and ironic that it appears that Russia is planning genocide in Ukraine,” Kyiv said in its petition.
The International Court of Justice was established in 1946 to settle disputes between nations. Its rulings are binding and cannot be appealed, but the court has no means to enforce them.
The principal judicial body of the United Nations bases its conclusions primarily on treaties and conventions. Both Ukraine and Russia are parties to the 1948 United Nations Genocide Convention.
“Let us resolve our dispute as civilized nations,” said Mr. Korynevich, just before addressing Moscow: “Put down your arms and give your evidence.”
The International Criminal Court (ICC), also located in The Hague, which tries individuals accused of committing the world’s worst atrocities, has also heard the case related to the Russian invasion. It is investigating accusations of war crimes and crimes against humanity.
Ukraine on Monday asked the International Court of Justice to act to protect the Ukrainian people, and to be the “key spark” for the rest of the international institutions.
“Our fate is in your hands,” Oksana Zolotaryova, a member of the Ukrainian delegation, concluded.