This article was originally published by Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and is reprinted with permission.
mnesty International has accused Russia of committing war crimes, and “likely” crimes against humanity, through the forcible transfer and deportation of civilians from Ukraine.
The rights group said in a report issued on November 10 that Russian and Russia-imposed authorities forced civilians to go through an “abusive” screening process known as filtration, where some were arbitrarily detained, subject to torture or other ill-treatment, and separated from their children.
The report says it documented cases in which members of specific groups — including children, the elderly, and people with disabilities — were forcibly transferred to other Ukrainian regions controlled by Russian troops or unlawfully transferred to Russia.
In one case, a woman was separated from her 11-year-old son during filtration, detained, and not reunited with him, a clear violation of international humanitarian law.
“Separating children from their families and forcing people hundreds of kilometers from their homes are further proof of the severe suffering Russia’s invasion has inflicted on Ukraine’s civilians,” Agnes Callamard, Amnesty International’s Secretary General said in a statement.
“Russia’s deplorable tactic of forcible transfer and deportation is a war crime. Amnesty International believes this must be investigated as a crime against humanity.”
Amnesty International said it has repeatedly called for occupying Russian troops and officials responsible for the full-scale aggression against Ukraine to be held accountable.
It also called on the world’s governments to demand Russia stop the forcible transfer and arbitrary detention of civilians from Ukraine.
“Comprehensive accountability in Ukraine will require the concerted efforts of the UN and its organs, as well as initiatives at the national level pursuant to the principle of universal jurisdiction,” Amnesty International said.
Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine in late February.