European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen suggested creating a special international court to probe Russian actions in Ukraine and using frozen Russian assets to help rebuild the nation.
The head of the European Union’s executive arm said Wednesday the bloc would try to gather international support for a “specialized court backed by the United Nations to investigate and prosecute Russia’s crime of aggression.”
The aim would be to address crimes that wouldn’t fit under the mandate of the International Criminal Court.
“Under certain conditions, an ad hoc international tribunal for the crime of aggression may allow for the prosecution of the top Russian leaders who would otherwise enjoy immunity,” the commission wrote in a legal analysis. “It could be based on a multinational treaty among supporting states, and its international character could be strengthened further with a UN mandate calling for its establishment.”
In a video address posted on Twitter, von der Leyen also said the bloc would “find legal ways” to use money seized from Russia to help fund Ukraine’s reconstruction. The EU has blocked some €300 billion ($311 billion) in Russian central bank reserves and frozen around €19 billion in assets held by sanctioned Russian businessmen, although these estimates aren’t complete.
She said the bloc would seek to create a structure to manage those funds, invest them, and use the proceeds to benefit Ukraine.
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