Politics

Eire to make use of Council of Europe presidency to push to carry Russia accountable on warfare


The Government plans to make use of its six-month presidency of the Council of Europe to construct worldwide assist to make Russia accountable for the crime of aggression towards Ukraine, the Minister for Foreign Affairs has mentioned.

Simon Coveney mentioned the Republic was eager to agree “a collective approach” in the direction of holding Russia accountable for crimes in Ukraine whereas it leads the 46-nation physique, which promotes democracy, human rights and the rule of regulation.

The Minister shall be in Turin, Italy on Friday because the Republic assumes the rotating presidency of the council’s committee of ministers at its annual session. The State final held the presidency in 2000 and takes cost of the inter-governmental physique, which is distinct from the European Union, two months after Russia was expelled over the invasion of Ukraine.

The council is residence to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR). Among the principle challenges going through the worldwide physique throughout the Republic’s presidency is how to reply to Russia’s aggression, sort out rising human rights abuses and keep assist for the ECHR system.

Speaking to The Irish Times earlier than travelling to Italy, Mr Coveney mentioned he had spoken to some council members about the way it may very well be used throughout the presidency to construct consensus for a mechanism to carry Russia legally accountable for the crime of aggression. He mentioned the International Criminal Court had jurisdiction to contemplate warfare crimes and crimes towards humanity however not to take a look at the crime of aggression by one nation towards one other.

“It is something that has had quite a bit of political debate internationally but hasn’t really achieved any consensus yet. I think the Council of Europe would be a good body to look at that. That is something that we will try to pursue,” he mentioned.

The parliamentary meeting of the council has already referred to as on all its members to “urgently” set up a tribunal with a mandate to “investigate and prosecute the crime of aggression allegedly committed by the political and military leadership of the Russian Federation”.

The Republic’s presidency would imply it’s within the driving seat on the council ought to it press forward with the meeting’s proposal to arrange a world legal tribunal to attempt Russian president Vladimir Putin and different leaders in Moscow over the warfare in Ukraine.

The meeting has mentioned the tribunal must be primarily based in Strasbourg “in view of possible synergies with the European Court of Human Rights” and have the ability to situation worldwide arrest warrants and never be restricted by state immunity or immunity for heads of presidency.

Founding members

Even although Russia has been expelled, the European Convention on Human Rights will proceed to use to the nation till September, six months after its expulsion.

The State is among the 10 founding members of the Strasbourg-based council, which was established in 1949. All 27 European Union nations are concerned.

Mr Coveney mentioned the council was “one of the few forums” that the Republic shares with nations resembling Ukraine that aren’t a part of the EU.

“This is an opportunity to focus on the continent of Europe, its values, its respect for international law. Obviously, our presidency is going to be dominated by the ongoing war in Ukraine,” he mentioned.

A lot of key conferences of the council shall be held in Dublin throughout the Irish presidency, together with two periods of its parliamentary meeting in June and October.

The State will use the Irish presidency to focus the council’s on the problem of migration underneath the theme of “Fáilte”, aimed toward fostering a “Europe of welcome, inclusion and diversity”.

Mr Coveney mentioned the intention of this theme was to see how the council’s 46 members “cope with and provide protections for the movement of people into and around the continent of Europe – not just Ukrainians fleeing the conflict, but other migrants as well within communities”.

The Republic may even promote the significance of collaborating in democracy and youth engagement throughout its presidency, sharing the expertise of residents’ assemblies at residence with council members.



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