U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
STATEMENT BY SECRETARY ANTONY J. BLINKEN
Office of the Spokesperson
For Immediate Release
February 18, 2023
Based on a careful analysis of the law and available facts, I have determined that members of Russia’s forces and other Russian officials have committed crimes against humanity in Ukraine. Members of Russia’s forces have committed execution-style killings of Ukrainian men, women, and children; torture of civilians in detention through beatings, electrocution, and mock executions; rape; and, alongside other Russian officials, have deported hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian civilians to Russia, including children who have been forcibly separated from their families. These acts are not random or spontaneous; they are part of the Kremlin’s widespread and systematic attack against Ukraine’s civilian population.
We reserve crimes against humanity determinations for the most egregious crimes. Today’s determination underlines staggering extent of the human suffering inflicted by Moscow on the Ukrainian civilian population. This determination also reflects the deep commitment of the United States to holding members of Russia’s forces and other Russian officials accountable for their atrocities against the people of Ukraine.
There can be no impunity for these crimes. All those responsible must be held accountable. As today’s determination shows, the United States will pursue justice for the people of Ukraine for as long as it takes.
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