EU Parliament declares Russia a state sponsor of terrorism

On Wednesday, November 23, the Parliament of the European Union adopted a resolution recognizing Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism because of the military aggression against Ukraine. 494 members of the European Parliament supported the resolution, 58 voted against, 44 abstained.

By declaring Russia a state sponsor of terrorism and a state that uses the means of terrorism, MEPs intend to prepare the ground for bringing Russian president Vladimir Putin and the Russian government to justice before an international tribunal, says the European Parliament in a statement.

"The deliberate attacks and atrocities committed by the Russian Federation against the civilian population of Ukraine, the destruction of civilian infrastructure and other serious violations of human rights and international humanitarian law are equated to terrorist acts against the population of Ukraine and constitute war crimes," reads the Resolution of the European Parliament.

The European Commissioner for Home Affairs, Ylva Johansson, pointed out at the plenary session of the European Parliament on October 18, 2022, that there is no EU legislation for recognizing a third country as a state sponsor of terrorism. In this regard, the European Parliament in its resolution calls on the EU member states to develop a legal framework for designating states sponsoring terrorism and states resorting to terrorism.

Such a designation would entail tough sanctions and restrictions on relations with the EU for a particular country. After that, the EU Council should consider the inclusion of the Russian Federation in such a list of EU state sponsors of terrorism, the European Parliament believes.

The European Parliament calls on the EU and its member states to take measures to "fully isolate the Russian Federation," including stripping Russia of its membership in international organizations and bodies such as the UN Security Council. It also implies the refusal by the EU members to hold events in the territory of the Russian Federation, further reduction of diplomatic relations with Russia and the reduction of contacts with its official representatives "to an absolutely necessary minimum."

MEPs are calling on EU member states to close and ban Russian government-linked institutions, such as Russian centers of science and culture and organizations and associations of the Russian diaspora, "which operate under the leadership of Russian diplomatic missions and promote Russian state propaganda in the world."

The European Parliament calls on the EU Council to include in the EU list of terrorist organizations the Wagner Private Military Company and the 141st Special Motorized Regiment of Kadyrov fighters, as well as other Russian-funded armed groups and militia units operating in the occupied territories of Ukraine.

Given the "escalation of terrorist acts of the Russian Federation against the population of Ukraine", the European Parliament calls on the EU Council to quickly complete work on the ninth package of sanctions. The European Commission and EU member states are asked by MEPs to consider sanctions against countries trying to help Russia circumvent punitive measures.

Also, the European Commission and the EU member states are urged to create an international compensation mechanism, including an international register of damage, in active cooperation with the Ukrainian authorities. The European Parliament insists on creating a legal framework that will allow the confiscation of Russian assets frozen by the EU and their use to eliminate the consequences of Russian aggression against Ukraine, including the restoration of Ukrainian infrastructure and compensation to victims of Russian aggression.

  War in Ukraine, EU, Russia