Council of Europe

04/02/2024 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 04/02/2024 08:45

Secretary General delivers keynote speech at the Conference of Participants of the Register of Damage for Ukraine in The Hague

"The world has just marked two years since the liberation of Irpin and Bucha, where terrible crimes were committed against civilians. This tragic milestone is a further reminder of what is at stake and how important it is that we do everything we can to support Ukraine and its people as the Russian Federation's appalling war of aggression continues. I have witnessed first-hand in Kyiv (at the opening of the Register's office in Ukraine) last month where we sheltered from a heavy missile attack that hit Ukraine's critical infrastructure. These attacks - all attacks - must end. There must instead be peace, a sustainable peace, which requires justice, and our collective commitment to help deliver it. The Register of Damage for Ukraine is vital to achieving that", emphasised Secretary GeneralMarija Pejčinović Burić in her keynote speech at the 4th meeting of the Conference of Participants of the Register of Damage for Ukraine in The Hague, held as part of the Ministerial Conference "Restoring Justice for Ukraine", co-hosted by the Netherlands, Ukraine and the European Commission.

The Council of Europe Register of Damage for Ukraine opens today the claims submission process for compensation of damage, loss or injury caused by the Russian aggression against Ukraine. The initial launch focuses on one critical category, namely damage or destruction of residential property. The destruction of homes in war has an immense impact on people's lives. Between 300,000 and 600,000 claims are expected in this category.

"Today the Register will receive its first claims. This amounts to the first, substantial and necessary step towards a future international compensation mechanism in which the Council of Europe also stands ready to play a role, as we seek, ultimately, to ensure accountability for the crimes that Russia is committing", underlined Marija Pejčinović Burić.

Meetings with Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands Hanke Bruins Slot and with Attorney General of the United Kingdom, Victoria Prentis were also part of Secretary General's agenda.