The US government has formally accused Russia of committing war crimes in Ukraine

The damaged military vehicle was found on March 21, 2022, when civilians were evacuated from the Ukrainian city of Mariupol through humanitarian corridors under the control of the Russian military and pro-Russian separatists.

Stringer | Anatolic Agency | Getty Images

WASHINGTON – US Secretary of State Anthony Blingen on Wednesday officially announced that the US government believes Russia has committed war crimes in Ukraine.

In a statement, Blinken reiterated the atrocities in Mariupol, Ukraine, and compared it to Russia’s campaigns against Grozny during the Second Chechen War and Aleppo during the Syrian civil war.

“Russian forces have destroyed apartment buildings, schools, hospitals, vital infrastructure, public vehicles, shopping centers and ambulances, and thousands of innocent civilians have been killed or wounded,” Blingen said.

“Many of the sites attacked by Russian forces have been clearly identified as being used by civilians,” Blinken said in a statement, citing the bombings at the Mariupol Maternity Hospital and the theater there, clearly marked with the word for children in Russian “in large letters visible from the sky.”

On March 17, 2022, people gathered near apartments destroyed during the Ukraine-Russia conflict in the besieged southern port city of Ukraine.

Alexander Ermoshenko | Reuters

“Our assessment is based on careful review of information available from public and intelligence sources,” Blingen said in a statement issued by President Joe Biden while he was on a flight to Brussels for the NATO and G-7 summits.

Blingen noted that the question of Russia’s guilt or innocence would eventually be left in the hands of the court. Although he did not give his name, the jurisdiction of the traditional court in cases of alleged war crimes is not vested in the International Criminal Court or the ICC.

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However, the United States is not a member of the ICC. Created in 2002 to investigate international war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity, the United States was engaged in a war in Afghanistan at the time of its establishment and was ready for an invasion or Iraq.

The film was released by the Azov Battalion on Thursday, March 17, 2022, showing the theater damaged after the shelling in Mariupol, Ukraine. Rescuers search for survivors in the wreckage of a theater destroyed by a Russian airstrike.

Azov Battalion | AP

The decision to publish this estimate now is not accidental. The White House has been preparing a long list of so-called to-dos for several weeks in order to bring the Pittsburgh to the Brussels summit – firm US actions, positions and commitments that demonstrate the United States’ firm commitment to helping NATO and Ukraine.

Russia launched its brutal and unprovoked occupation of Ukraine on February 24 under the false pretense that Russian forces would “de-nacify” Ukraine. The Kremlin’s claim was particularly cynical, led by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zhelensky, who is of Jewish descent from the Holocaust.

This is a growing story, check back for updates.

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