War in Ukraine: Documents, texts, materials

By Ville Kari, Assistant Professor, Tilburg University

Key Documents in Chronological order

5 December 1994: The Budapest memorandum on security assurances, a multilateral treaty signed in exchange for Ukraine surrendering its nuclear weapons arsenal. In the Memorandum, the US, the UK, and the Russian Federation agree among other things to respect the independence and sovereignty and the existing borders of Ukraine, and to refrain from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of Ukraine (“and that none of their weapons will ever be used against Ukraine except in self-defense or otherwise in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations”).

31 May 1997: Treaty on Friendship, Cooperation and Partnership between Ukraine and the Russian Federation. This treaty was a post-Soviet successor to the Soviet-era tradition of treaties of friendship, co-operation and mutual assistance, the treaty framework enabling supervision and intervention by the Soviet Union across the Soviet Bloc. While the1997 treaty was based on sovereign equality and did not include a direct intervention clause, its Article 6 nevertheless contained an obligation to “refrain from participating in, or supporting, any actions directed against the other High Contracting Party, and … not conclude any treaties with third countries against the other Party”; the Russian interpretation of this clause is essentially a prohibition to cooperate with NATO. The treaty of 1997 was to be renewed by the parties at ten-year intervals. After the invasion of Crimea it was no longer renewed, and consequently expired in 2019.

2013: Vladimir Putin’s essay ‘A Plea for Caution from Russia‘, an op-ed in The New York Times cautioning against US intervention in Syria. Here is a critically annotated version from the Washington Post. Putin writes, among other things:

“The law is still the law, and we must follow it whether we like it or not. Under current international law, force is permitted only in self-defense or by the decision of the Security Council. Anything else is unacceptable under the United Nations Charter and would constitute an act of aggression.”

18 March 2014: Vladimir Putin’s Crimea annexation speech, declaring the Russian claim and continued control over Crimea and Sevastopol. The broader international community has not recognised Russia’s claims, and the Russian presence in Crimea is widely perceived as an unlawful occupation.

21 March 2014: The Association Agreement between the European Union and Ukraine. An earlier version of this agreement was abruptly rejected in 2013 by the then president Viktor Yanukovich, sparking the Euromaidan protests and the overthrow of Yanukovich’s pro-Russian government. The new government, which signed the Association Agreement in 2014, is the origin of the so-called “Kiev Regime” which Vladimir Putin is trying to subjugate.

21 March 2014: European Council Conclusions on Ukraine, in which the European Union expressly stated its non-recognition of the Crimean referendum and occupation by Russia. For a historical point of comparison, see here and here.

1 September 2014 and 19 September 2014: The two Minsk Agreements, mediated by the OSCE, provided a preliminary ceasefire agreement for Eastern Ukraine and a further implementation plan. The interpretation of some of the points in the plan led into long-term disagreements on meaning between Ukraine and Russia, such as the agreement to “Implement decentralization of power, including by enacting the Law of Ukraine on the interim status of local self government in certain areas of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions (Law on Special Status)”.

6 December 2018: Ukrainian Law on termination of the treaty on friendship, cooperation and partnership between Ukraine and the Russian Federation. The reasons for termination include the military aggression (in Crimea and Donbas) by the Russian Federation, which according to the law is against the object and purpose of the Treaty and constitutes a material breach of the Treaty. As a consequence, the treaty of 1997 expired on 31 March 2019. See here for a thorough analysis and explanation of the expiration.

12 July 2021: Vladimir Putin’s essay ‘On the historical unity of Russians and Ukrainians’. This document lays out Putin’s private thinking on the historical revisionist motivations for his assault on Ukraine. (Note that Mr. Putin’s views about revising Ukrainian sovereignty have no basis whatsoever in international law. See for example here, here and here for instances of the official recognition of Ukraine by the Soviet and Russian states.) This essay was not the starting-point of Mr. Putin’s revanchism; famous early precedents include his ‘geopolitical disaster’ speech (2005) lamenting the fall of the Soviet Union, and his Munich speech (2007) deploring the international dominance of the United States.

17 December 2021: The Russian “Draft Agreement on measures to ensure the security of the Russian Federation and the member states of NATO” and the Russian “Draft treaty between the USA and the Russian Federation on security guarantees”. These two documents, which essentially demand the recognition of a Russian sphere of interest in order to appease the Kremlin, crowned Putin’s aggressive public campaign against NATO and Europe on the threat of war against Ukraine.

1 February 2022: Russian diplomatic note delivered by Foreign Minister Lavrov addressed to the the US, Canada and several European countries, in which Russia demanded binding answers to whether or not the addressed NATO and EU countries would comply with the Russian demands.

4 February 2022: China-Russia Joint Statement on the International Relations Entering a New Era and the Global Sustainable Development. This is the full text of the new Sino-Russian partnership in opposition to the West. Note the mutual acknowledgement of interests in Ukraine and Taiwan.

21 February 2022: Vladimir Putin’s ‘blood and family ties’ speech, combining his historical revisionism with threats towards Ukraine. The speech was followed by the recognition of the putative secessionist regimes in Eastern Ukraine, and the signing of Treaties of Friendship, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance between the Russian Federation and each of the putative republics.

  • UN Security Council Records, 8970 mtg, 21 February 2022, with the majority of countries stating the non-recognition of the putative republics. For historical echoes, see here and here.

24 February 2022: Vladimir Putin’s declaration of war / war manifesto. This is the presidential address announcing the full-scale invasion of Ukraine, as submitted by Russia to the UN Security Council as document S/2022/154. For historical comparisons, see the Yale war manifestos database here.

25 February 2022: UN Security Council draft resolution on the aggression in Ukraine. This draft was vetoed by Russia. The vote was 11 in favour, 1 against (Russia), and 3 abstaining (China, India, UAE).

  • UN Security Council Records, 8979 mtg, 25 February 2022, including the vote on the draft resolution. Note among others the explanation of vote by China, “stressing” that “Russia’s legitimate security aspirations should receive attention and be addressed properly”.

26 February 2022: Ukraine v. Russian Federation (ICJ): Application initiating proceedings.

26 February 2022: Ukraine v. Russian Federation (ICJ): Application for provisional measures.

1 March 2022: The European Court of Human Rights issued its first urgent interim measures against the Russian invasion (Press release). The ECtHR has since then issued subsequent interim measures in the matter of the Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta, to prohibit interference from the Kremlin.

2 March 2022: UN General Assembly resolution on Aggression in Ukraine, condemning the Russian aggression. The vote was 141 in favour and 5 against. There are no vetoes in the General Assembly. The Resolution was passed in the Uniting for Peace procedure. Despite the overwhelming vote, the UNGA resolution will cannot legally replace or substitute a UN Security Council resolution with respect to the UN Charter Chapter VII or otherwise.

5 March 2022: Vladimir Putin’s ‘It has been getting worse lately’ speech. This speech, given to Aeroflot female aircrews, travels widely off the rails and includes allegations of weapons of mass destruction in Ukraine as well as increasingly unhinged threats about the extents to which Putin might be ready to go: “People who do not want to understand this … must understand that if they continue to do what they are doing … they will call into question the very future of Ukrainian statehood.”

7 or 8 March 2022: Ukraine v Russian Federation (ICJ): Russian position against ICJ jurisdiction, opposing the ordering of provisional measures. The document appeared on the ICJ website some time after the conclusion of the oral proceedings on 7 March 2022.

16 March 2022: Ukraine v Russian Federation (ICJ): Order of 16 March 2022, where the Court indicates the following provisional measures: (1) The Russian Federation shall immediately suspend the military operations that it commenced on 24 February 2022 in the territory of Ukraine; (2) The Russian Federation shall ensure that any military or irregular armed units which may be directed or supported by it, as well as any organizations and persons which may be subject to its control or direction, take no steps in furtherance of the military operations referred to in point (1) above; and (3) Both Parties shall refrain from any action which might aggravate or extend the dispute before the Court or make it more difficult to resolve. For the separate opinions and declarations, see here.

5 April 2022: UN Security Council Meeting Record, 9011th mtg, (UN web video), where the Security Council discusses the first evidence and reports of the Bucha massacre committed by Russian troops near Kyiv. The Russian permanent representative to the UN hastened already on 4 April to deny the accusations in a press conference, and claimed that the Bucha massacre has been framed by the Ukrainian government. (The meeting records will appear behind the link once they are published. The video is available immediately.)

24 April 2022: Chinese communication on ‘Acting on the Global Security Initiative to Safeguard World Peace and Tranquility‘ delivered by State Councilor Wang Yi. In this communication, China called upon the states of the world to align with itself in defence of a world order based on mutual respect for sovereignty and separated spheres of interest. By contrast, the text opposed certain countries (read: the United States) that ‘pursue unilateralism in the name of multilateralism, use double standards while touting their own rules, and practice hegemony under the guise of democracy’. The communication expands on the original announcement of the Global Security Initiative by Xi Jinping on 21 April 2022.

26 April 2022: Partial transcript of Putin’s meeting with the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, where Putin expressed the view that the new so-called People’s Republics in Eastern Ukraine had a right to secede on the basis of the Kosovo precedent and the Kosovo Advisory Opinion of the ICJ.

27 April 2022: Vladimir Putin’s ‘We will use them if necessary‘ speech, threatening the world with the use of nuclear weapons. In the past, one of Putin’s spokesmen refused to rule out the use of nuclear weapons in the event of an “existential threat”. To the concern of international lawyers, this mirrors the language of the 1997 ICJ Advisory Opinion on the Legality of the Threat or Use of Nuclear Weapons.

9 May 2022: Vladimir Putin’s ‘Absolutely unacceptable threat’ speech, given in the context of a military parade. In this newest iteration of Russian justifications for the war in Ukraine, Putin accused NATO and Ukraine for planning an ‘invasion’ of Russian ‘historic lands’. Accordingly, the Russian aggression is characterised as ‘a pre-emptive strike at the aggression’. See also Putin’s message to the leaders of certain former Soviet republics and Putin’s putative mini-republics.

12 May 2022: Joint statement of the President and Prime Minister of Finland, regarding Finland’s NATO membership. The chosen position was based not only on the Russian aggression in Ukraine, but particularly on the recent Russian demands of limiting the independent foreign policies of Finland and Sweden. After the statement, the Russian foreign ministry issued threats of ‘military-technical’ retaliation and warned that Finland’s NATO accession would be interpreted as a violation of the 1947 Paris Peace Treaty and the 1992 Treaty on the Foundations of Relations between Russia and Finland. The previous day, the United Kingdom had given public declarations of solidarity with Finland and Sweden in the event of aggression during the NATO membership applications process. Both conclude with the statement that each ‘document is a political declaration and not a legally binding commitment under international law.’

29 June 2022: Trilateral Memorandum by Türkiye, Finland and Sweden regarding Turkey’s support for the NATO membership of Finland and Sweden and the strengthening of security cooperation between the three states. This document resolved the first hurdle for Finland and Sweden’s accession to NATO, as the government of Turkey had raised the possibility of vetoing their membership on the grounds of their reluctance to sufficiently collaborate with Turkey in its policies and operations against Kurdish political and paramilitary organisations.

1 July 2022: Announcement by the Foreign Ministry of Ukraine that Ukraine has submitted its memorial against the Russian Federation at the International Court of Justice.

5 July 2022: The NATO accession protocols for the Republic of Finland and Kingdom of Sweden signed.

13 July 2022: A Joint statement of support from the European Commission and over 40 various governments, stressing the significance of the pending ICJ case of Ukraine v the Russian Federation, as well as a declaration of unanimous support for the Ukrainian case.

9 August 2022: The President of the United States signed the United States Instruments of Ratification of the Accession Protocols, approved by the Senate on August 3. The treaty documents can be found here. The NATO Parliamentary Assembly tracking of all member state ratifications can be found here.

July-September 2022: The matter of the Allegations of Genocide (Ukraine v. Russian Federation) at the International Court of Justice is expanding. As the deadlines for the written memoranda for the parties draw near, a number of signatories to the Genocide Convention have declared their interventions in the matter under Article 63 of the ICJ Statute. Declarations of intervention have been submitted at least by Latvia, Lithuania, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Germany, the United States, Sweden, France, Romania, Denmark, Italy, Poland, Ireland, Finland, Estonia, Spain, Australia, Portugal, Austria, Greece, Luxembourg, Croatia and the Czech Republic. More interventions may still appear on the docket. According to Article 63, every state party to the convention under dispute has a right to intervene in the proceedings; but as they use this right, the construction given to the treaty by the Court in its judgment will be equally binding upon them all (instead of only the original parties).

7 September 2022: The international Ukraine Task Force of the Global Accountability Network published its Proposal for a UNGA resolution and the accompanying proposal for a statute of a special tribunal for Ukraine on the crime of aggression. Around the same time, the Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy mentioned in his remote address to French academics an upcoming proposal for a UNGA resolution on compelling Russia to pay reparations for its war in Ukraine.

21 September 2022: Vladimir Putin’s “Let our kin and kith be torn to pieces by butchers” speech, accompanied by an Executive Order on partial mobilisation in the Russian Federation (a summary here). This day, President Putin announced the gradual mobilisation of Russian reserves to the Ukraine theatre, announced the annexation plans for the remaining conquered territories in Russian hands, and again threatened the world with nuclear annihilation. The speech, written in a thick tone of dictatorial propaganda, demonstrates a considerable loss of grasp with reality.

30 September 2022: The putative annexation speeches in the official ceremony as well as a public rally continued Putin’s stream of threats of thermonuclear war and glorification of the Soviet Union. There is no international legal basis for the so-called annexations.

12 October 2022: United Nations General Assembly Resolution ES‑11/4, condemning the Russian so-called “referendums” in and the putative annexations of the occupied Ukrainian territories. Although General Assembly Resolutions are not fully binding sources of international law, the result demonstrates a clear and near-universal non-recognition of the Russian conquests. Only five countries voted against the resolution: these were Belarus, North Korea, Nicaragua, Russian Federation and Syria.

14 November 2022: UN General Assembly passed the Resolution on Furtherance of Remedy and Reparation for Aggression against Ukraine, after a months-long campaign among the representations (draft Resolution here and the summary minutes here). The project for reparations is a remarkable development in the legal developments concerning the war in Ukraine. The vote was notably tight – 94 in favour, 13 against, 74 abstaining. In other words, the vote was considered genuinely important by the Members. The ever industrious Russian permanent representative Vasili Nebenzia hastened to discredit the resolution as legally null and void, a mere continuation of “centuries of slavery and oppression, colonialism, and neocolonial domination, military aggression and interventions, blockades, unilateral sanctions, and shameless exploitation of natural resources of the occupied and subjugated countries”. In an act of support for Russia, China also voted against.

Historical comparisons

Below are a number of key documents concerning relevant parallels and precedents from the history of international law. Most of these deal with past Russian aggression (Georgia) and old Soviet imperialism (Czechoslovakia, Hungary). On the other hand, in its attempts to justify its aggression in Ukraine the Russian Federation has made frequent references to past interventions by NATO and the United States. To account for those accusations, I have also included some essential documents concerning the 2003 war in Iraq and the Kosovo intervention in 1999. The reader should bear in mind that the defence of tu quoque does not form a valid principle of international law. In the words of the Nuremberg Military Tribunal in the High Command case: “Under general principles of law, an accused does not exculpate himself from a crime by showing that another committed a similar crime, either before or after the alleged commission of the crime by the accused. (The High Command Case, Judgment of 27 October 1948).

1931: The Manchuria crisis

1931: Council of the League of Nations meeting on 13 October 1931. After the Japanese invasion of Manchuria, China appealed to the League of Nations for assistance. In this meeting, Japan responded on the floor to the accusations. It defended the invasion as a peacekeeping operation intended to protect vital Japanese interests.

1932: League of Nations Assembly meetings 11 March 1932, in which the members of the League of Nations formulated and adopted the principle “that it is incumbent upon the Members of the League of Nations not to recognise any situation, treaty or agreement which may be brought about by means contrary to the Covenant of the League of Nations or to the Pact of Paris”. This was related to the Stimson doctrine (here is the original telegram).

1956: The Soviet invasion of Hungary

  • UN General Assembly Emergency Special Session Resolution on Hungary, 4th November 1956, calling for the withdrawal of Soviet troops.
  • UNSC Draft Resolution on Hungary, vetoed by the Soviet Union
  • UN Security Council Records, 746 mtg, 28 October 1956
  • UN Security Council Records, 752 mtg, 2 November 1956
  • UN Security Council Records, 753 mtg, 3 November 1956
  • UN Security Council Records, 754 mtg, 4 November 1956

1968: The Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia

  • Documents regarding the Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia (International Legal Materials 7/1968). An outstanding collection from 1968 containing inter alia Soviet and Warsaw Pact correspondence and communiqués from the events leading to the intervention, the various diplomatic appeals and protests from Czechoslovakia, and the key positions of the major cold war powers.
  • UNSC Draft Resolution on Czechoslovakia, vetoed by the Soviet Union
  • UN Security Council Records, 1441 mtg, 21 August 1968
  • UN Security Council Records, 1442 mtg, 22 August 1968
  • UN Security Council Records, 1443 mtg, 22 August 1968
  • UN Security Council Records, 1444 mtg, 23 August 1968
  • UN Security Council Records, 1445 mtg, 24 August 1968

1999: The NATO intervention in Kosovo

The background of the declaration of independence of Kosovo (see below) is anchored in the Kosovo war, ca. 1996-1999, which culminated in a disputed NATO intervention in FR Yugoslavia to stop the conflict. Here are links to select Security Council documents:

  • UN Security Council Records, 3988 mtg, 24 March 1999, at the dawn of the NATO intervention in Kosovo. Russia condemned the intervention as aggression, while NATO and the broad majority of states referred to the overwhelming humanitarian urgency of the situation.
  • UN Security Council Records, 3989 mtg, 26 March 1999, in which the Russian Draft Resolution S/1999/328 was not adopted (vote 3 in favour, 12 against).
  • UN Security Council Records, 4011 mtg, 10 June 1999, in which the Security Council adopted Resolution 1244 (1999) calling for humanitarian aid and establishing the UNMIK peacekeeping mission. The Resolution was adopted with 14 in favour and 1 abstaining (China). Russia was among the states sponsoring the resolution, but it maintained its condemnation of the intervention as a violation of international law.

17 February 2008: The Kosovo Declaration of Independence, with which Kosovo unilaterally declared its independence from Serbia. (Alternative link here.)

22 July 2010: ICJ Advisory Opinion on the accordance with international law of the unilateral declaration of independence in respect of Kosovo (full case file here). In this Advisory Opinion, requested by the UN General Assembly, the International Court of Justice concluded that the adoption of the declaration of independence had not violated any applicable rule of international law. The UN General Assembly subsequently acknowledged the opinion with Resolution 64/298. (The record is here.)

2003: The Iraq war

8 November 2002: UN Security Council Resolution 1441, in which the Council “Decides … to afford Iraq a final opportunity to comply with its disarmament obligations … and accordingly decides to set up an enhanced inspection regime”. A monitoring mission was dispatched to Iraq, and Iraq was ordered to submit a full disclosure of all its documents relating to its WMD programmes. The record for the meeting is here.

5 February 2003: UN Security Council Records, 4701st mtg, where the US Secretary of State, Colin Powell, presented the US case for the invasion of Iraq. Powell argued that “[w]e have evidence that these weapons existed. What we do not have is evidence from Iraq that they have been destroyed or where they are”.

14 February 2003: UN Security Council Records, 4707 mtg, in which the chairman of UNMOVIC Hans Blix and the Director General of IAEA Mohamed ElBaradei reported not having discovered weapons of mass destruction in Iraq thus far.

18 March 2003: President George W Bush’s ultimatum against Iraq, laying out the putative reasons for the impending invasion and demanding Saddam Hussein’s resignation within 48 hours. In his speech, Bush justified the attack with reference to Security Council resolutions 678 (1990) and 679 (1990), “both still in effect” according to him. Thus the attack would be a continuation of the first Gulf War.

19 March 2003: President George W Bush’s declaration of war speech, in which he announced to the world the beginning of the Allied attack.

20 March 2003: Vladimir Putin’s ‘law of the fist’ speech at the Kremlin, denouncing the attack as “contrary to the world public opinion, contrary to the principles and norms of international law and the Charter of the UN”.

21 June 2006: The concluding UNMOVIC summary of the compendium of Iraq’s proscribed weapons programmes to the UN. No weapons of mass destruction were found in Iraq.

2008: War in Georgia

8 august 2008: Presidential statement by Dimitri Medvedev accusing Georgia of aggression against Russian “peacekeepers” already in Georgian territory and founding the pretext for further Russian invasion. See here for the Georgian view.

12 August 2008: Six-point ceasefire agreement between Georgia and Russia, concluded with the mediation of the French president and the European Union. Translation here.

26 August 2008: Presidential statement by Dimitri Medvedev announcing the Russian recognition of the so-called republics of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. The statement includes the accusation that “during the night of August 8, 2008, [Georgian President] Saakashvili opted for genocide to accomplish his political objectives”.

  • UN Security Council Records, 5951st mtg, 8 August 2008, containing the initial claims of the war: Russia accused Georgia of a “treacherous and massive attack” against “South Ossetia”, while Georgia described armed attacks and false-flag operations from the Russian-controlled secessionists within its sovereign territory.
  • UN Security Council Records, 5952nd mtg, 8 August 2008
  • UN Security Council Records, 5953rd mtg, 10 August 2008
  • UN Security Council Records, 5954th mtg, 11 August 2008
  • UN Security Council Records, 5961st mtg, 19 August 2008, in which the Council debated the ceasefire agreement of 12 August 2008. An unofficial reproduction of the French draft resolution can be found here.
  • UN Security Council Records, 5969th mtg, 28 August 2008, convened upon Georgia’s protests against the Russian recognition of the so-called republics within its internationally recognized territory.
  • UN Security Council draft resolution on extending the mandate of the UN mission in Georgia, 14 June 2009, vetoed by Russia in UN Security Council 6143rd mtg, 15 June 2009.


The Nuremberg Trials

1945: Nuremberg War Crimes Tribunal, Day 12. The opening speech by the British prosecutor Hartley Shawcross, laying out the charges of crimes against peace – that is, waging a war of aggression – against the Nazi war criminals. Shawcross famously begins by citing the following words from Adolf Hitler: “I shall give a propagandist cause for starting the war, never mind whether it be true or not. The victor shall not be asked later on whether he told the truth or not. In starting and making a war, not the right is what matters, but victory – the strongest has the right.” What follows is a thorough and powerful rebuttal of such views.

Totalitarian spheres of interest

1938: The Munich Agreement (29 September) (alt here), which was the final attempt at appeasing the Nazi regime. It was done in response to the Nazi ultimatum (27 September) threatening with immediate intervention in the Sudetenland to “protect” the German-speaking population there as well as the false assurances (27 September) for international cooperation.

1939: The Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact between Nazi Germany and USSR, including the Secret Additional Protocol partitioning Eastern Europe between the two.

1940: The Tripartite Pact between Japan, Germany and Italy, mutually providing for the recognition of spheres of influence in Europe and in Asia.

1945: The Yalta and Potsdam conference protocols, in which the Western Allies bargained and negotiated with the USSR over the structure of the United Nations Organization as well as the limits of the Soviet sphere of interest in Europe after the Second World War.

1955: The Warsaw Pact between the Soviet Union and its neighbouring Socialist countries, effectively establishing the Soviet sphere of influence and delineating the ‘Iron Curtain’. Note especially Articles 4, 5 and 7.


1917-1918 Soviet Nationalization decrees. In the light of the recent Russian plans for taking over the industries and services vacated by foreign companies withdrawing from Russia, the following documents from the early Soviet era may be of interest to the reader:

1922: Translated text of the Agreement for the Formation of the USSR, in which article 26 guaranteed all the republics the right to withdraw from the Union.

1942: US-Britain Master Lend-Lease Agreement, by which the United States agreed to supply Great Britain with extensive armaments in their battle against Nazi Germany. Payment was not due until further notice, and payment could take place in any form of “consideration”. According to Article VII of agreement, this consideration would primarily consist of joint action directed towards the creation of a liberalized international economic order in the postwar world, opening up the British colonies for international free trade in accordance with the Atlantic Charter. The Lend-Lease Agreement was made possible through the passing of the U.S. Lend-Lease Act of 1941, which permitted President Roosevelt to authorise virtually unlimited arms shipments to Britain in accordance with the programme.


The ICJ case file on Allegations of Genocide under the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (Ukraine v. Russian Federation), 2022.

The ICC case file on Alleged crimes committed in the context of situation in Ukraine since 21 November 2013. The International Criminal Court’s head prosecutor Karim A.A. Khan QC announced the initiation of the investigation on 2 March 2022 after receiving referrals from 38 (later 39) states.

Academic / civil society sources

31 January 2023 (latest view): A comprehensive list of UN documents on Ukraine at the Security Council Report website. Highly recommended for keeping track of the developments on the UN front.

4 March 2022: An unofficial statement and draft declaration for the creation of a special tribunal to punish President Putin for the crime of aggression against Ukraine, published with the lead of the former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown. It has been co-signed by numerous professors, lawyers and writers. A contrary opinion by professor Kevin Jon Heller can be found here.

14 March 2022: An unofficial model indictment‘ concerning President Putin by publicists Ryan Goodman and Rebecca Hamilton.

31 March 2022: The Ukraine Peace Settlement Project of the Lauterpacht Centre for International Law, University of Cambridge. The Project has already published its first draft Framework Agreement for a peace settlement. It also maintains an excellent collection of key legal and diplomatic documents. In offering to limit Ukraine’s sovereignty and self-determination (‘neutralization’), the proposal appears to accept a number of the demands in Vladimir Putin’s draft treaties on Russian spheres of interest in 2021 (here and here). For thought-provoking alternative perspectives, see here and here.

18 May 2022: The Columbia Law School announced its International Claims and Reparations Project (ICRP). The project examines the possibility of setting up an international claims commission to oversee the future Russian reparations and compensations arising from its state responsibility with regards to the war. This proposal is closely connected with the subsequent Ukrainian efforts to gain UNGA support for the establishment of such a commission.

7 September 2022: The international Ukraine Task Force of the Global Accountability Network Proposal for a UNGA resolution and the accompanying proposal for a statute of a special tribunal for Ukraine on the crime of aggression.

Essential legal sources

The Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, Rome, 17 July 1998, 2187 UNTS 3.

Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, Paris, 9 December 1948, 78 UNTS 277 (The Genocide Convention)

The Charter of the United Nations and the Statute of the International Court of Justice, San Francisco, 26 June 1945 (Consolidated version here)

General Treaty for Renunciation of War as an Instrument of National Policy, Paris, 27 August 1928, 94 LNTS 57 (The Kellogg-Briand Pact)

To be continued.