Durbin, Graham, Grassley Meet With ICC Chief Prosecutor
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Chair and Ranking Member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, along with U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA), met with the International Criminal Court’s (ICC) Chief Prosecutor Karim Khan to receive an update on its investigation into the atrocities being committed in Ukraine. U.S. Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) also joined the meeting.
“The ICC has a critical role to play to document evidence of the atrocities being committed in Ukraine,” said Durbin. “Thankfully, in close cooperation with the Ukrainian government, the ICC’s chief prosecutor, Karim Khan, is committed to doing so. During today’s meeting, we reiterated our support of the ICC’s investigation and will continue to push the Biden Administration to stop withholding evidence of atrocities from the ICC as clearly messaged and recently authorized by Congress. Perpetrators committing unspeakable war crimes, such as those unfolding before our very eyes in Ukraine, must be held to account.”
“Great bipartisan meeting with International Criminal Court Chief Prosecutor Khan. The ICC is moving aggressively to investigate and prosecute war crimes committed in Ukraine, and Congress has passed laws aiding their efforts. It is past time the Department of Defense comply with U.S. law when it comes to sharing information about the activities of Russian aggressors in Ukraine. This refusal to cooperate by the Department of Defense is coming to a head. It can no longer be ignored by Congress,” said Graham.
“What Vladimir Putin is doing in Ukraine is indefensible,” said Grassley. “There’s no question that he and his cronies are committing war crimes. I’m glad the ICC’s Chief Prosecutor came to the Senate today so we could discuss the importance of our efforts to stand up against authoritarianism and injustice.”
Photos of the meeting can be found here.
Durbin, Co-Chair of the Senate Ukraine Caucus, and Graham recently led a bipartisan letter to President Biden urging his Administration to support the investigation by implementing bipartisan legislation enacted in the last Congress. This letter came after the March 17 news that the ICC had issued an arrest warrant for Putin for war crimes in Ukraine.
Last month, the Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing entitled “Holding Russian Kleptocrats and Human Rights Violators Accountable for their Crimes Against Ukraine,” with Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco.
Durbin, Grassley, and Graham’s bipartisan Justice for Victims of War Crimes Act – which updates the current war crimes statute to enable prosecution of war criminals in the United States regardless of the nationality of the perpetrator or victim – was signed into law by President Biden last year.
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