Washington: President Joe Biden has accused Russia of carrying out a genocide in Ukraine, claiming its soldiers are attempting to destroy the nation and its civilian population.
Biden accused President Vladimir Putin’s soldiers of genocide but added that it was up to lawyers to assess if Russia’s actions constituted genocide.
“I am going to predict that what President Biden called it is what we will ultimately likely find when we are able to gather all of this evidence,” Victoria Nuland, the State Department’s third official, said CNN.
“Because what is happening on the ground is not an accident,” she said. “It is an intentional decision by Russia, by its forces to destroy Ukraine and its civilian population.”
Genocide is defined as a crime “committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group” by the 1948 UN convention on preventing genocide.
Some jurists avoid the phrase, and Western officials are split on charging Russia with genocide. Putin deemed Biden’s usage “unacceptable.”
According to US diplomats, the president’s remarks are mostly “moral” rather than legally legal.
“The president was speaking to the impression that he had garnered from watching the horrific footage that we’ve all seen from places like Mariupol, from places like Bucha, from Kharkiv and from other places,” Ned Price, a State Department spokesperson, cited Ukrainian cities where the West accuses Russia of crimes against people.