Ukrainian specialists urged countries to exert pressure on Russia, including an energy embargo and sanctions for alleged war crimes, ahead of a UN Security Council hearing on the humanitarian situation in Ukraine on May 12. “Putin is culpable for the war crimes committed in the continuing Russia-Ukraine conflict,” stated Dr. Hanna Hopko, an expert in advocacy, Russian expansionism, and international politics. Hanna Hopko emphasized “continuing to put pressure on Russia, including an oil embargo,” calling the Russian military forces “demoralized.” During a panel discussion on Russia’s ongoing conflict and war crimes in Ukraine, Hanna said.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy warned that Kyiv’s patience is running out for negotiations with Russia, given mounting evidence of atrocities committed by the Russian army, in a virtual address to French university students on Wednesday. Zelenskyy reiterated the need for Ukraine to join the European Union, calling for meaningful steps to include Ukraine into the union. “Ukraine will only strengthen other states, our army has demonstrated its capabilities. Our people have proven themselves,” Zelenskyy said. On being asked about how ready Ukraine is to join the European Union, another expert said, “Ukraine is ready to receive the candidature of the EU and is in the best of its form to carry out all the reforms required to join the EU.” However, speaking on the reforms taking place in Ukraine, “the image of corruption in Ukraine is now paving the way towards zero corruption, said another expert,” Halyna Chyzhyk during the discussion.
“The strategic corruption in Ukraine is a reason for the full-scale aggression by Russia in Ukraine,” the expert said referring to the Donbas, a beleaguered heartland region that blankets much of eastern Ukraine which has been the front line of the country’s conflict with Russia since 2014. She further said, “Putin blocked exports and not allowed Ukraine to feed the world,” adding that, “Ukraine is described as the breadbasket of the region”. Halyna Chyzhyk, an advocacy officer and judiciary reform expert at the Ukrainian NGO “Anticorruption Action Centre” also discussed in detail the atrocities committed by Russia during the invasion. Chyzhyk extensively discussed reforms in Ukraine while blaming the country’s strategic corruption for the full-scale invasion by Russia. The EU recently has proposed some of its toughest measures yet against Russia, including a total ban on oil imports and sanctions on war crimes suspects. The war in Ukraine which has entered its third month now has created an unprecedented humanitarian crisis with more than 5 million Ukrainian fleeing to neighbouring Western countries, according to the UNHCR data.
We established independent anti-corruption bureaus to tackle high profile cases, the judiciary reform expert added. The war has resulted in almost 3000 civilian casualties as of April 28. The casualty figures include as many as 70 children, according to the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Refugees (UNOHCR). Russia started its military operation on February 28 claiming to protect the people in the eastern Ukraine region from what Putin termed a Nazi regime. More than two months have passed since the start of the Ukraine invasion and Moscow has captured significant territory in the eastern part of the country. However, Western countries led by the US has imposed severe financial cost on Moscow and excluded it from the global financial system.
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