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Europol forms task force to investigate Russian war crimes

Europol forms task force to investigate Russian war crimes Photo: Europol forms task force to investigate Russian war crimes (Getty Images)

Europol has established a new operational task force (OTF) to assist in the investigation of war crimes in Ukraine, according to Europol's page.

In particular, the goal of this task force is to aid in identifying suspects and their involvement in war crimes, crimes against humanity, or genocide committed in Ukraine by collecting and analyzing open-source intelligence (OSINT).

Europol notes that since the start of the war, there has been an unprecedented level of OSINT on the internet, much of it due to the increasing importance of the internet and social media.

Such information can significantly assist investigators in verifying and documenting cases of war crimes.

Composition of the working group: The working group is led by the units combating international crime of the police in the Netherlands (Nationale Politie) and the Federal Criminal Police Office in Germany (Bundeskriminalamt), with the support of Europol and its major international crime analysis project (AP CIC).

Currently, 14 countries have agreed to allocate OSINT capabilities to the target group to support priority requests from Ukraine, other countries, and the International Criminal Court.

The participating countries are:

  • Belgium;

  • France;

  • Germany;

  • Ireland;

  • Italy;

  • Lithuania;

  • Netherlands;

  • Portugal;

  • Slovak Republic;

  • Slovenia; Spain;

  • Norway;

  • United Kingdom;

  • United States.

Russian war Crimes

During the full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the Russian armed forces regularly commit war crimes. Several Western countries have condemned the Kremlin for this and promised to punish all those involved in committing crimes.

Recently, a UN investigative commission stated that it found additional evidence of Russian military aggression and war crimes in Ukraine, including rape and the deportation of children to Russia.

It was also reported that the United States will provide $1 million to the International Center for the Investigation of Crimes of Aggression against Ukraine, which was created in The Hague.