FOCUS on the Laws of War: The Geneva Conventions

War, like any other human endeavor throughout history, has historically had rules. The invasion of Ukraine by Russia and the actions of its soldiers in alleged incidents, such as in the suburb of Bucha the capital of Kyiv, have led members of the international community to accuse the Russian government of war crimes. The modern outlook on what constitutes a war crime can be traced far back, most notably to 20th-century agreements like the Geneva Conventions.

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Russia Accused of Atrocities as Massacre Continues in Ukraine

On April 3,  Ukraine accused Russia of committing a massacre of the Ukrainian people located in Bucha, a city located north of Kyiv, the Ukrainian capital. The accusations arose following Russia’s retreat from Kyiv. Numerous images and videos being circulated show the violence Russian soldiers inflicted upon the Ukrainian citizens. Images show numerous atrocities, such as a picture of at least twenty male corpses, lining a singular street in Bucha.

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Viktor Orban Wins Fourth Term as Hungarian PM

On April 6, Viktor Orban, already serving out his third consecutive term, won the Hungarian parliamentary election in a landslide, a victory that will put Hungary on uncertain footing with the EU and other allies, Reuters reports. The mercurial leader of Hungary’s center-right populist party Fidesz, Orban has previously drawn the ire of European heads of state and EU commissioners alike for his abrasive rhetoric on gender and immigration issues.

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FOCUS on the Laws of War: The ICC and ICJ

The Ukraine war has renewed conversations about justice and accountability over crimes that violate international law. The alleged massacre in the Kyiv suburb of Bucha and claims that Russian forces are targeting civilians have mobilized figures in Western nations, including U.S. President Joe Biden, to call for prosecutions of war criminals, reports Business Insider. 

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FOCUS on the Laws of War: Nuclear Weapons and Other Banned Arms

The war in Ukraine has brought renewed attention to laws surrounding the use of weapons of mass destruction (WMDs), including banned ones. Amid concerns that Russian President Vladimir Putin might unleash WMDs on Ukraine if he keeps losing the advantage in the war, arms control treaties have been thrown back in the limelight. 

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The Global Effort for Ukrainian Autonomy Faces Negative Externalities

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has prompted questions on the treatment of refugees worldwide. Nearly six million Ukrainians, mostly women and children, have left their homeland. A new iron curtain is crushing international relations and victims of war. As the military conflict escalates and men are prohibited from leaving the country, millions of women and children embark on journeys seeking shelter throughout the European Union. Despite an influx of volunteers, welcoming hosts, and social programs to assist with transitions, danger and uncertainty linger with human trafficking and secure passage concerns.

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India’s Neutral Foreign Policy Threatened by Ukraine Crisis

On February 24, Russia made the conscious decision to invade Ukraine for yet another time since 2014. This active encroachment into non-Russian territory, which was condemned internationally, triggered the largest refugee crisis in Europe since World War II, reports Reuters. Although Europe has been heavily affected by this Russian aggression, the actions taken by those less impacted by the conflict will set the tone for how the international community reacts to similar crises in the future.

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Russian Attacks on Mariupol Devastate the City

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky compared the ongoing Russian siege of Mariupol as mirroring the Nazi siege of Leningrad in a speech on March 16 as the city underwent heavy bombardment by the Russian military, reports The Guardian. This comparison may not be entirely inaccurate, as The Red Cross claims that the Russian Siege of Mariupol is veering towards a humanitarian crisis. Ukrainian reports estimate nearly 3,000 civilians have been killed.

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With the World Watching, Could Taiwan be at Risk?

Considering the strategic and symbolic significance of Taiwan to the People’s Republic of China, several experts have argued that China’s invasion of the island is a matter of when and not if. Many have questioned Chinese President Xi Jinping’s decision to support Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, given that Russia’s actions are in direct contradiction to China’s century-long foreign policy tenet of non-interference.

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FOCUS on Ukraine: Global Sanctions

Although the United States and its European allies have so far avoided direct military contact with the Russian armed forces, they have engaged in a different kind of warfare. Economic warfare has been employed to deter further Russian aggression in Ukraine and punish the regime for its illegal territorial expansion.

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