Minister of State James Browne TD attends Conference of Ministers of Justice of the Council of Europe in Riga, Latvia
Minister of State James Browne TD has this week represented Ireland at the Council of Europe Ministers of Justice conference in Riga, Latvia. The conference is entitled “On the Path to Justice for Ukraine: Advancing Accountability, Supporting the Resilience of its Justice System and Reuniting Children with their Families”.
The Conference saw the adoption of a Declaration outlining a series of principles (“Riga principles”) to achieve comprehensive accountability for the Russian Federation’s aggression against Ukraine and provide redress to all victims of the war, including through the focused and efficient functioning of the Register of Damage caused by the aggression.
Speaking at the Conference, Minister Browne said:
“Ireland has been unequivocal and steadfast in our support for the people and Government of Ukraine following Russia’s full-scale invasion. The international community must persist in its efforts to ensure that the crime of aggression as it relates to Ukraine can be prosecuted.
The Register of Damage is an important step in achieving accountability. Over time, we hope it will help secure full reparation for the damage caused as a result of the Russian Federation’s aggression against Ukraine.”
Minister Browne went on to add:
“We have condemned and will continue to condemn, in the strongest possible terms, the detention, abduction or kidnapping of civilians in Ukrainian territories temporarily under illegal Russian military control and insists on their unconditional release”
Minister Browne will now travel to Tallinn and Vilnius for engagements relating to EU-LISA and EU-EIGE.
Notes for editors
The conference is divided into three sessions, taking place on 10, 11 and 12 September.
Session I revolved around ensuring comprehensive accountability in the context of the Russian Federation's aggression, featuring the launch of the "Register of Damage Caused by the Aggression of the Russian Federation Against Ukraine." Moreover, it included discussions around the establishment of an international tribunal for the crime of aggression and an international compensation mechanism.
Session II addressed the support provided to the resilience of Ukraine's justice system during times of war and post-war reconstruction. The debate also focussed on the investigation of Russia’s war crimes, as well as on the implementation of the Council of Europe Action Plan for Ukraine and the pledging of additional support.
Lastly, Session III was dedicated to the topic of reuniting families and restoring hope, with a specific focus on supporting Ukrainian children who have been illegally deported to Russia and Belarus