Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said Russia committed “crimes against humanity” in Ukraine in a Saturday statement, vowing to hold Russia “accountable” for murder, torture and rape.
“Members of Russia’s forces have committed execution-style killings of Ukrainian men, women, and children; torture of civilians in detention through beatings, electrocution, and mock executions; rape; and, alongside other Russian officials, have deported hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian civilians to Russia, including children who have been forcibly separated from their families,” Blinken said in the release. “These acts are not random or spontaneous; they are part of the Kremlin’s widespread and systematic attack against Ukraine’s civilian population.”
Blinken’s remarks were echoed by Vice President Kamala Harris at the Munich Security Conference on Saturday. While the Biden administration had previously classified Russia’s actions against Ukraine “war crimes,” the designation of “crimes against humanity” goes a step further.
Russia invaded Ukraine Feb. 24, launching a massive attack across the latter country. The United States has sent over $100 billion in aid to Ukraine, and recently announced they would send 31 M1 Abrams main battle tanks and earlier announced a battery of MIM-104 Patriot surface-to-air missiles would be provided.
“Today’s determination underlines staggering extent of the human suffering inflicted by Moscow on the Ukrainian civilian population,” Blinken said. “This determination also reflects the deep commitment of the United States to holding members of Russia’s forces and other Russian officials accountable for their atrocities against the people of Ukraine.”
The Russian embassy in Washington, D.C. did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the Daily Caller News Foundation.