On genocide claims, provisional measures and double-edged swords: Ukraine’s case against Russia in the International Court of JusticeSoirila, Ukri
Defensor Legis 1,5/2022 s. 340–346
On 26 February 2022, Ukraine filed an application instituting proceedings against the Russian Federation before the International Court of Justice (ICJ), alleging that Russia has violated the 1948 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (‘Genocide Convention’) by falsely accusing Ukraine of genocide and using this as justification for mounting a military operation against it. Ukraine also asked the ICJ to indicate provisional measures to calm down the situation until the ICJ has ruled on the case. After a brief oral hearing, the Court issued an order on 16 March for Russia to immediately suspend all military operations in Ukraine.
The objective of this paper is to describe, on a general level, the progression of the conflict between Ukraine and Russia so far and to analyse some of the rather unusual arguments put forward in the context of the conflict, the underlying reasons, and issues relating to the ICJ’s jurisdiction and provisional measures. The paper also seeks to examine the strategic benefits and disadvantages of Ukraine’s legally controversial lawsuit from the perspective of the parties (especially Ukraine) and the ICJ itself.