Ukraine to file complaint to The Hague against Russia for use of Crimean shelf

Ukraine will file a complaint against Russia to the international Court of Justice for mining gas in the annexed Crimean shelf, said Minister of Justice Pavlo Petrenko during a speech in Parliament.

According to the Minister, pretrial work is now ongoing in order to identify violations by the Russian Federation of international conventions for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism and the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination.

“Russia cannot escape international prosecution under these articles if we prove their involvement in violations specified in these conventions,” he said.

Petrenko explained that several rounds of pretrial procedures were carried out with regards to these two conventions and if the Russian Federation does not recognize its violations and does not resolve them, Ukraine will initiate a trial in the international Court of Justice.

“The third convention relates to a blatant violation of Ukraine’s rights because our subsoil is used on the continental shelf in the Crimea. Under this convention we exhausted all pretrial settlement mechanisms with an aggressor country and now the process of initiating proceedings is ongoing in the international Court of Justice,” he stressed.

The Minister said that Russia has added provisions to these agreements since the 1990s stipulating that if Russia violates these agreements it has a right to refuse to consider such a case in the international court.

“Russia has been systematically preparing for aggression. The Russian diplomats since the 90s, at the time of signing of the intergovernmental and international agreements deliberately included provisions allowing Russia not to extend the right of the international court on these agreements,” he added.

Petrenko also said that the Ministry of Justice, together with Ministry of Foreign Affairs, analyzed several thousand international agreements and found “a small but serious number of agreements allowing us to appeal to the international court without relying on the consent of the aggressor country.”

Petrenko announced that Ukraine has already filed five complaints against Russia with the European Court of Human Rights. “The entire civilized world has no doubts that Russia is an aggressor-country which is blatantly trampling the world legal order. I’m convinced that Ukraine will win all cases we initiated. It will be a part of the restoration of justice,” he said.

  Ukraine, Russia, Crimea, Gas, The Hague