Oleksandra Matviichuk: “Russians have enjoyed impunity for decades”

Photo: Jean-Francois Badias, ČTK/AP

Last year, the non-profit Centre for Civil Liberties was one of three recipients of the Nobel Peace Prize – the first time ever that a Nobel Prize has been awarded to a Ukrainian citizen or organisation. Ukrainian human rights lawyer Oleksandra Matviichuk started working for the organisation, which she now heads, in 2007. She has been involved in a number of activities relating to the protection of human rights, including the collecting of evidence of Russian war crimes in Ukraine, so when Czech Radio’s Jan Bumba interviewed her recently, he started by asking her what specifically she is focusing on right now.

“I want to find answers for the people we are documenting all these crimes for. Who will provide a chance for justice for hundreds of thousands of victims of this war? It is not an abstract question.

“The Ukrainian national system is overloaded with an extreme amount of crimes and the International Criminal Court will limit its investigation only to several selected cases. So we need to change the world’s approach to war crime justice in order to achieve this goal.”

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Authors: Jan Bumba, Anna Fodor, Ruth Fraňková