Mar 04 2022

Senators Introduce Resolution Calling For War Crimes Accountability

WASHINGTON – A bipartisan group of senators led by U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) yesterday introduced a Senate resolution calling for Vladimir Putin and members of his regime to be held accountable for the numerous acts of war, aggression, and human rights abuses that have been conducted under his watch.

The Graham resolution:

  • Strongly condemns the ongoing violence, war crimes, crimes against humanity, and systematic human rights abuses continually being carried out by the Russian Armed Forces and their proxies and President Putin’s military commanders, at the direction of President Vladimir Putin.
  • Encourages nations to take any and all action to investigate war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by the Russian Armed Forces and their proxies, and President Putin’s military commanders, at the direction of President Vladimir Putin.
  • Supports any investigation into war crimes, crimes against humanity, and systematic human rights abuses levied by President Vladimir Putin, the Russian Security Council, the Russian Armed Forces and their proxies, and President Putin’s military commanders.
  • Encourages the United States Government and partner nations to use its voice, vote, and influence in international institutions in which they are members to hold President Vladimir Putin, the Russian Security Council, the Russian Armed Forces and their proxies, and President Putin’s military commanders accountable for their sponsorship of ongoing violence, war crimes, crimes against humanity, and systematic human rights abuses.

“Dictators like Putin care only about themselves and their cronies,” said Senator Graham. “This resolution supports efforts to bring forward war crimes complaints against the Putin regime to the International Criminal Court and is a chance to stop Putin’s madness. The resolution supports the investigation of Putin as a war criminal and urges the ICC and ICJ to expand their investigation to include the Russian military and its commanders who are carrying out these war crimes. If the United States Senate supports efforts to hold Putin accountable, I believe other nations will join. It will be the first step in decades to make the consequences of his actions real to Putin.”

The resolution is cosponsored by Senators Chris Coons (D-Delaware), Ben Cardin (D-Maryland), Angus King (I-Maine), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Thom Tillis (R-North Carolina), Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisconsin), John Cornyn (R-Texas), Dianne Feinstein (D-California), Jerry Moran (R-Kansas), Marco Rubio (R-Florida), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Cory Booker (D-New Jersey), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Chris Van Hollen (D-Maryland), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minnesota), Roger Marshall (R-Kansas), Martin Heinrich (D-New Mexico), and Roger Wicker (R-Mississippi).  

“It is already obvious to any observer that the wanton assaults on residential buildings, schools, synagogues and churches in various cities across Ukraine suggest that war crimes are being committed by the Russian military on the orders of Vladimir Putin,” said Senator Cardin. “An immediate start to investigations by the International Criminal Court is appropriate and necessary, as this bipartisan resolution makes clear.”

“Vladimir Putin is an autocratic thug who is slaughtering innocent people and attempting to overrun a sovereign, freedom-loving nation, and partner of the United States. Thousands of men, women, and children are dying at the hands of his murderous regime—and he must be held accountable. The Senate, Iowa, America, and the western world stand with the people of Ukraine and condemn Putin and his cronies and I’m calling on the International Criminal Court to prosecute their war crimes,” said Senator Ernst.

“Vladimir Putin’s heinous attack on a sovereign nation has ended decades of peace among the nations of Europe and created immense suffering across Ukraine and Russia,” said Senator King. “His thinly veiled attempt to reconstitute the Soviet Union will not be successful – instead, he has single-handedly devastated the Russian economy and rallied the Ukrainian people around their shared national identity. But as Putin’s grand ambitions stall, it’s clear he is ramping up his illegal assault, attacking innocent civilians, and willfully committing atrocities against Ukraine’s most vulnerable. The United States and our partners across the free world stand with the Ukrainian people and their brave leaders against these atrocities. This bipartisan resolution reaffirms that commitment; together, we will ensure that Russia feels the harsh consequences of Putin’s unprovoked invasion.”

“Putin is a brutal dictator who has repeatedly violated international law since coming to power and he should be held accountable. This bipartisan Senate resolution stands with the Ukrainian people and supports Ukraine’s war crimes complaint to the International Criminal Court,” said Senator Baldwin. “It is important to support the investigation of Putin as a war criminal and hold him and those carrying out his attacks accountable for the tragic death, destruction and human rights abuses they are responsible for. I am proud to stand with my Senate colleagues in a bipartisan show of support to Ukraine and it people who only want peace and the freedom democracy brings.”

“The appalling attacks on civilians in Ukraine are the latest in a long line of Vladimir Putin’s unjustifiable orders,” said Senator Moran. “From indiscriminate bombings in Chechnya and Syria to targeted assassinations in London and Berlin, Vladimir Putin and those who obey his commands are not just thugs, they are war criminals. The United States and international community should hold them accountable.”

“Putin’s inhumane and unprovoked attack on Ukraine and its people can’t go unpunished, and neither should his dark history of jailing and even murdering dissidents. By holding Putin and his allies accountable for the innocent blood they have on their hands, we can ensure they’re brought to justice and prevent future atrocities,” Senator Grassley said.

"Vladimir Putin's illegal and unjust war of choice against Ukraine and its people is an outrageous affront to peace and democracy,” said Senator Booker. “I unequivocally condemn this unprovoked invasion and support efforts to hold Putin and his enablers accountable for their ongoing abuses of the most fundamental human rights."

“The world has watched in horror as Putin has used brute military force in an attempt to subjugate the peaceful country of Ukraine, killing countless innocent civilians in his path,” said Senator Collins. “The resilience and determination of the Ukrainian people who are standing up to this ruthless autocrat to defend their democracy and their freedom are inspiring, but they need our continued support.  As we continue to assist the Ukrainians through the supply of weapons and humanitarian aid as well as the imposition of sanctions, this resolution calls for holding Putin accountable for the war crimes he has committed and will help pressure Russia to bring an end to this terrible war.”

“Putin must be held accountable for his unprovoked attacks on the Ukrainian people. He has blood on his hands, and I join my colleagues today in standing with the people of Ukraine and calling for a thorough investigation into war crimes Putin and his military may have committed. We will not back down in our steadfast support for the territorial sovereignty and rights of the people of Ukraine,” said Senator Van Hollen.

“Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine has caused widespread destruction and substantial loss of life. The United States must stand with the people of Ukraine and hold Vladimir Putin accountable for his war crimes against innocent civilians,” said Senator Marshall.

“Vladimir Putin is a cruel dictator and a war criminal,” Senator Wicker said. “It is time for the U.S. to call Putin what he is and condemn this Russian invasion in the strongest possible terms. I commend the International Criminal Court for their quick work to open an investigation into the blatant abuse of human rights and widespread crimes against the people of Ukraine.”

“Russia’s unjustified, unprovoked aggression against Ukraine must be condemned in the strongest possible terms. Vladimir Putin and his regime must be held accountable by the international community for their human rights abuses and their indefensible attack on the people and democracy of Ukraine,” said Senator Heinrich.

The resolution can be found here.