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Ukraine accepts ICC Jurisdiction but stops short, way short

The Registrar of the International Criminal Court has announced that it has received a declaration from Ukraine accepting jurisdiction for international crimes committed on its territory between November 21, 2013 and February 22, 2014.

The start date of Nov. 21, 2013 is the day that Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych’s government announced it was abandoning the agreement with the European Union. And the end date of Feb. 22, 2014 is the day Yanukovych fled the country. It thus covers the period in which Yanukovych’s government used force to try to repress the protests that eventually ended his hold on power.

As I wrote in an earlier post at Just Security, Kiev would be well served by going the full distance and joining the Rome Statute in toto. It would raise the costs for Putin and for any future military action on the part of the Russian forces. As international actors grapple for additional levers to use against Moscow, there is still one waiting in The Hague.

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About the Author

is co-editor-in-chief of Just Security. Ryan is the Anne and Joel Ehrenkranz Professor of Law at New York University School of Law. Follow him on Twitter (@rgoodlaw).