This document outlines Amnesty International’s main concerns and recommendations in view of the 24-25 March European Council discussion on the crisis in Ukraine.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is a manifest violation of the United Nations Charter and an act of aggression that is a crime under international law.1 One month since the invasion, Amnesty International has documented an escalating pattern of violations of international humanitarian law and human rights law, with catastrophic consequences for the Ukrainian people and the entire civilian population.
There are now over 6.5 million internally displaced persons and over 3.5 million refugees, the majority of whom are women and children.
Meanwhile, as the war rages on in Ukraine, the Russian authorities have unleashed an unprecedented, nationwide crackdown on independent journalism, anti-war protests and dissenting voices in an attempt to stifle any criticism of its actions at home. This clampdown has decimated Russia’s already beleaguered civil society, following nearly a decade of legislative restrictions designed to quell dissenting voices and shrink civic space. Following Russia’s exit from the Council of Europe, and its declared intention to denounce the European Convention on Human Rights, some of the last safeguards against human rights abuses will be off limits to those who need them most in Russia.