1st Edition

The Russian-Ukrainian Conflict and War Crimes Challenges for Documentation and International Prosecution

Edited By Patrycja Grzebyk, Dominika Uczkiewicz Copyright 2025
    354 Pages 2 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book offers a multidisciplinary examination of the international crimes committed in the Russia-Ukraine War, and the challenges of their prosecution and documentation.

    As the largest international armed conflict in Europe since World War II, Russia’s war against Ukraine has provoked strong reactions and questions about the post-1945 world order, the utility of the war, and the effectiveness of international criminal justice. Throughout the chapters in this volume, scholars and legal practitioners from Canada, Germany, Poland, Ukraine, the UK and the United States present the results of interdisciplinary research, insights from the perspective of other post-communist states, and first-hand expertise from directly working on the documentation and prosecution of these crimes. This offers a broader picture of post-Cold War relations and sheds light on the roots and nature of the war and the importance of regional approaches. The chapters also present some possible responses to the crimes committed in the conflict, with a focus on a victims-centered approach to transitional justice.

    This volume will be of interest to students of international criminal and humanitarian law, security studies, peace and conflict studies, and Eastern European history.

    Introduction: The Rocky Road to Justice: Efforts to Document and Prosecute Crimes in Ukraine from a Historical and Legal Perspective
    Patrycja Grzebyk and Dominika Uczkiewicz

    Part 1: The Soviet Legacy and Ruskii Mir

    1. War Crimes in Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine:The Soviet Legacy and the Wellsprings of Moscow’s Disregard of International Humanitarian Law
    Mark Kramer

    2. Historical Soviet and Contemporary Russian Criminal Acts Against Ukrainians Under the UN Genocide Convention of 1948: A Comparative Analysis
    Tomasz Lachowski

    3. The Crime of Genocide: Historical Aspects, Political Discussions and Memory Laws in Ukraine
    Yurii Kaparulin

    4. In the Span of a Hybrid War: Engaging Post-Truth in Shadowing Russian War Crimes
    Kseniya Yurtayeva

    5. A Nuremberg for Communism?: Unified Germany, International Law, and the Idea of a Tribunal for Stalinist/Soviet Crime
    Annette Weinke

    6. Putin’s Youth and the TikTok War: Creating the Militarized Self in Russian Adolescents
    Ian Garner

    Part 2: Crimes in the Ukraine War and Their Documentation

    7. Russia’s War Crimes in Ukraine as a Tool of War
    Agnieszka Bieńczyk-Missala

    8. Digital Evidence in Investigations Concerning Russian Crimes in Ukraine
    Hanna Kuczyńska

    9. Ethical and Methodological Challenges of Documenting the War: Recording Testimonies of Ukrainian Witnesses After February 24, 2022
    Anna Wylegała

    10. The Center for Civil Liberties: Chronicler of Crimes Committed After Russia's Invasion of Ukraine
    Roman Nekoliak

    11. Witnesses to the War: The Raphael Lemkin Center for Documenting Russian Crimes in Ukraine as a Case Study
    Aleksandra Konopka and Krystian Wiciarz

    12. Precedents for Ukraine: Experiences of the UNWCC of Documenting War Crimes
    Dan Plesch, Jacob Thaler, and Dominika Uczkiewicz

    Part 3: Prosecution of Crimes Committed in the War in Ukraine

    13. Ensuring Fairness of War Crimes Trials in Ukraine
    Gaiane Nuridzhanian

    14. Prosecuting International Crimes in Ukraine: The Role of Ukrainian Domestic Courts
    Oktawian Kuc

    15. Polish Involvement in Prosecuting International Crimes Committed in Ukraine
    Bartłomiej Krzan

    16. Prosecuting War Crimes in Ukraine: The German Contribution
    Stefanie Bock

    17. The Ukrainian Struggle for Internationalization of the Problem of Punishment of the Crime of Aggression
    Anton Korynevych

    18. Accountability for Russian Imperialism in the Global East: The Special Tribunal for Aggression from a Post-Colonial Eastern European Perspective
    Patryk I. Labuda

    19. Ukraine and the Investigation of Systemic War Crimes: Learning from the UK's Investigative Failures in the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars
    Andrew Williams


    Patrycja Grzebyk is Associate Professor at the University of Warsaw and a specialist in public international law. She is the author of Criminal Responsibility for the Crime of Aggression (2013) and Human and Non-Human Targets in Armed Conflicts (2022).

    Dominika Uczkiewicz is a lawyer, historian, and Assistant Professor at the Centre for Totalitarian Studies at the Pilecki Institute in Warsaw. Her recent publications include Polish and German Perspectives on Transitional Justice: World War Two and its Aftermath (2021; co-edited with Wolfgang Form).