Wednesday, February 8, 2023

Ex-UK PM backs ‘Nuremberg-style’ trial for Putin

Former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown said that he backs a “Nuremberg-style” trial for Russian President Vladimir Putin over his invasion of Ukraine, the media reported on Saturday.

Brown is among 140 academics, lawyers and politicians, including Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dymtro Kuleba and another former British Prime Minister John Major, who have signed a petition calling for the setting up of a new legal system based on the Nuremberg trials of Nazi war criminals after the Second World War, the BBC reported.

The petition has already been backed by 740,000 people so far.

Writing in an article for the Daily Mail published late Friday, Brown said creating a new tribunal would close off this “loophole” in international law “that Putin could use to dodge justice”.

“We must move with speed, to assure the people of Ukraine that we are committed to action and not just warm words – and we must make Putin’s collaborators aware that the noose is tightening. If they do not distance themselves from Putin, they face prosecution and prison.

“From Britain – which rightly prides itself on democracy and the rule of law – the message must go out. At Nuremberg we held the Nazi war criminals to account. Eight decades on, we must ensure there will be a day of reckoning for Putin,” he added.

Brown’s remark comes as the International Court of Justice (ICJ) is currently investigating Putin for alleged war crimes in Ukraine.

But, The Hague-based court cannot pursue the crime of aggression without a referral from the UN Security Council, which Russia could veto, said the BBC report.

Since Russia began its invasion of Ukraine on February 24, several world leaders, including US President Joe Biden, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, have accused Putin of carrying out war crimes.

Earlier this week, Biden called his Russian counterpart a “war criminal”, triggering the Kremlin to denounce the branding saying that it was an “unacceptable and unforgiveable rhetoric”.

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