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Russia-Ukraine conflict: Ukraine's richest man sues Moscow at top human rights court in Europe
Amidst the violence on the ground in Ukraine by Russian forces, prosecutors and other legal authorities in Ukraine are engaging in legal battles against Russia. Ukraine’s richest man has filed a lawsuit against Moscow for the losses suffered by businesses in Ukraine due to its invasion.
Reuters reports that Rinat Akhmetov, who owns the Azovstal steelworks firm in Mariupol and is also Ukraine’s richest man, filed a lawsuit against Russia in the European Court of Human Rights, according to his company, System Capital Management.
Akhmetov is seeking compensation for the billions of dollars in losses since Russia’s unprovoked invasion back in February.
The filing by Akhmetov’s legal team is also requesting a court order “preventing Russia from engaging in further blockading, looting, diversion, and destruction of grain and steel” that is produced by his companies.
“Evil cannot go unpunished. Russia’s crimes against Ukraine and our people are egregious and those guilty of them must be held liable,” said Akmetov, according to SCM. “The looting of Ukraine’s export commodities, including grain and steel, has already resulted in higher prices and people dying of hunger worldwide. These barbaric actions must be stopped and Russia must pay in full.”
Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov responded to the lawsuit by saying that Russia is not under the jurisdiction of the European Court of Human Rights. Russia has also previously dismissed allegations by Ukraine of stealing from territories that it has occupied during the war.
Last month, Akhmetov’s steelmaker company Metinvest suffered $17 to $20 billion in losses due to Russia’s bombardment of its steel facilities in Mariupol.
Meanwhile, France’s foreign ministry recently condemned Russia’s attack on a shopping mall in Ukraine, killing at least 16 people and wounding 59 when two missiles hit the center in the central Ukrainian city of Kremenchuk.
“Russia must answer for these acts. France supports the fight against impunity in Ukraine,” said the French foreign ministry spokeswoman in a statement this week.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said that around 1,000 people were inside when the strike took place. According to witnesses, the attack caused a fire and sent dark smoke into the sky.
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