AuthorLuke Morton
ProfessionBarrister and Solicitor (Ontario) (Retired) Senior Counsel and Manager, Refugee Law Group, Department of Justice, Canada
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As the second edition of this book goes to print, war is raging in
Ukraine. The InternationalCriminal Court, headquartered in The
Hague, has sent teams of experts to Ukraine to investigate “allegations
of war crimes, crimes against humanity or genocide committed on any
part of theterritory of Ukraine.” Canada’s House of Commons voted
unanimouslyto approve the following motion: “That, given reports of
human rights abuses and attacks on civilians in Ukraine and other parts
of the world by the Russian-supported Wagner Group, the House call
upon the government to immediately designate the Wagner Group as a
terrorist entity.” The United States has designated the Wagner Group
a transnational criminal organization, citing human rights abuses in
Ukraine, Mali, and the Central African Republic. A former commander
of the Wagner Group is reported to have deserted, illegally crossed the
border into Norway, and applied for asylum in that country. Given
global events such as the war in Ukraine, the publicationof this import-
ant and excellent book’s second edition could not be more timely.
History and this book shows that although the wheels of inter-
national justice turn slowly, they do turn, and anyone found respon-
sible for committing atrocities such as war crimes or crimes against
humanity anywhere in the world can be held accountable. Although,
during the time of conf‌lict, those responsible for such atrocities are
usually insulated bynational borders and perhaps a sense of hubris and
invincibility, history has also shown that armed conf‌lictsend, regimes
eventually change, and persecutors often become the persecuted (or the

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