Beginning of restitution: the Hague will keep track of Russia’s damage to Ukraine

aftermath borodyanka town bombing kyiv oblast

The aftermath of the Borodyanka town bombing, Kyiv Oblast, April 2022/ Source: 

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On the 17th of February, the Dutch government formally accepted Ukraine’s proposal to establish the Register of Damage Caused to Ukraine by Russian Aggression in the Hague, as reported by the press office of the Ministry of Justice of Ukraine.

The register will contain information on war-related damages to Ukrainian citizens, businesses, and the state.

The ministry explained that the register aims to become the first component of a comprehensive reparations mechanism designed to ensure that the aggressor state compensates Ukraine in full for the damages caused per international law.

The Minister of Justice Denys Maliuska welcomed the Dutch government’s principled decision to locate the Register of Losses on its territory.

“The destruction and damage caused by Russia to our citizens, businesses, and state are enormous. The aggressor country is obliged under international law to compensate for them. To do so, the damage must be thoroughly documented, assessed, and prepared for further consideration,” stated Maliuska.

Maliuska emphasized that the Hague is, without a doubt, the capital of international justice. Hence, it is only fitting that the Register of Damage, the first component of the proposed reparations mechanism by Ukraine, will be located there. Additionally, the minister commended the Netherlands for its principled stance and leadership on the issue of Russia’s responsibility for its aggression against Ukraine. The ministry also urged the partners to join the effort to establish a compensation mechanism.

“The creation of the Register is a fundamental step for the future of the Compensation Mechanism. Now it is important that all processes are launched and the future fund is filled with resources, confiscated assets of the aggressor country. We believe that the partners will be active in the issue of the Compensation Mechanism, as its necessity has already been supported by the UN, PACE and other international organisations,” added Iryna Mudra, Deputy Minister of Justice.

The establishment of the Damage Register was recommended in a resolution passed by the UN General Assembly on the 14th of November, 2022.

According to the Ministry of Justice it is “to be the first component of a comprehensive reparations mechanism, which should include the establishment of a compensation commission to consider individual claims for compensation by Russia from individuals, companies and the state.”

The Ministry of Justice added that one should establish a compensation fund to accumulate funds for payouts per the commission’s decisions, including at the expense of confiscated Russian assets.

Read also:

Ukraine’s formula for peace: Russia withdraws from Ukraine, returns POWs and deportees, pays reparations – Zelenskyy

Tribunal or restitution? Ukraine eyes ways to return one of its richest art collections looted by Russia

UN General Assembly calls for Russia’s reparations to Ukraine

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