September 19, 2023, 16:22

Mass atrocities and violations of international  law at ZNPP – how to bring Rosatom to justice

The actions of the Russian occupation forces at ZNPP, Rosatom was well aware of, constitute serious violations of international law which are war crimes and crimes against humanity. This is particularly evidenced by the analysis of the systematic abductions, torture, and murder of ZNPP employees prepared by documenters and investigators of the Truth Hounds NGO.

Based on the findings of the study, Truth Hound and the Center for Civil Liberties have developed recommendations for the international community to bring the perpetrators to justice and impose sanctions on Rosatom. 

During the discussion at the BrainHub, the country’s main discussion platform, at the Media Center Ukraine – Ukrinform, Dmytro Koval, Legal Director of Truth Hounds noted that the first recommendation specifically concerns sanctions.

He expressed his belief that the moment is approaching when more and more countries will agree that sanctioning Rosatom is long overdue and needs to be done. And that there are fewer risks for such countries to refuse to cooperate with Rosatom and replace this cooperation with other companies instead.

“In particular, this is evident from some statements. We cite in our report a statement by the United Kingdom, which essentially boils down to the G7 is negotiating to replace or oust Rosatom from the global energy market. And this idea is that sanctions should be bilateral in a sense. On the one hand, they are punitive, indicating that this corporation is responsible for human rights violations, and therefore it should be subject to sanctions. On the other hand, sanctions are also an opportunity to stop a corporation from making excess profits for further conversion in military procurement and human rights violations, respectively,” he explained.

Dmytro Koval noted that a certain consensus on this issue is already evident. He also added that the mere fact that Rosatom is involved in such mass atrocities as torture and inhuman treatment should be taken into account when planning an advocacy campaign related to the imposition of sanctions against Rosatom.

“And, in addition, by the same torture or inhuman treatment, Rosatom is essentially violating international norms or international law relating to the safety of nuclear facilities in terms of failing to create proper working conditions for people working at a facility such as the Zaporizhia NPP. We believe that these two arguments—the mass atrocities Rosatom is involved in on the one hand, and the violation of international nuclear law relating to safe working conditions on the other hand can be used to further support those who are campaigning for sanctions against Rosatom,” he explained.

Dmytro Koval also emphasized that there is an intention to cooperate with key global players on the Rosatom issue.

“The actors are all the same, the European Union, the United Kingdom, the United States of America, the key players in the world today who take the liberty to impose collective sanctions. And we will cooperate with them to, again, provide them with additional arguments why the time has come,” he added.

BrainHub is the country’s main discussion platform created by the Media Center Ukraine – Ukrinform. It brings together experts from the state and civil society sectors. BrainHub hosts intellectual discussions around the issues of the post-war reconstruction of Ukraine. It’s the birthplace of the best ideas that will become the foundation for the road map of Ukraine’s reconstruction in all sectors: economy, infrastructure, education, agriculture, security, digital, etc.

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