The key points about war crimes

War crimes are serious violations of international humanitarian law, the laws, and customs applicable in international armed conflict. War crimes are subject to criminal liability in Ukrainian and international courts without a statute of limitations.

Types of war crimes

  • wounding or killing a civilian
  • committing torture and rape
  • unlawful detention of a civilian
  • kidnapping and enforced deportation of people
  • non-compliance with the rules of treatment of prisoners of war
  • looting
  • the use of military equipment in residential areas
  • violence against medical personnel
  • refusal or deprivation of access to medical care
  • using civilians to cover the military (human shields)
  • compelling citizens to participate in military operations against their own state
  • causing damage or destruction of civilian infrastructure objects
  • the destruction of historic monuments, buildings dedicated to religion, education, art, science, and hospitals, provided they are not military objectives
  • using Red Cross symbols or uniforms of the Armed Forces for camouflage
  • employing poison or poisonous weapons
  • extensive destruction of settlements not justified by military necessity
  • intentionally directing attacks on personnel, transport, and equipment related to the provision of humanitarian aid


What is the difference between a war crime and a military crime?


Who is investigating the war crimes of the Russian Federation in Ukraine?


What is the role of the Prosecutor General's Office?

The Office of the Prosecutor General performs procedural management of war crimes investigations. The Office monitors compliance with laws and regulations during the documentation and investigation of war crimes by other law enforcement agencies, and also represents the prosecution in court.

Prosecutors collect evidence of Russian war crimes to ensure proper documentation following international norms and practices. Thus, this evidence can be presented both in Ukrainian and international courts.