On Thursday, the European Union Agency for Law Enforcement Cooperation (Europol) officially joined the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) to investigate international crimes committed in Ukraine.
This is stated in a press release from Europol.
The agreement on the EU agency’s involvement in the investigation team’s work was signed by the attorneys general of the seven member states and Europol Executive Director Catherine De Bolle during the 17th meeting of the Advisory Forum of Prosecutors General at Eurojust.
In line with its mandate, Europol will provide analytical and forensic support to the JIT members and support the collection and analysis of data legally obtained from open sources such as social media, television and radio broadcasts.
Europol will also provide its expertise in investigating war crimes, crimes against humanity and other international crimes through the Major International Crimes Analytical Project.
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The Agency has previously provided legal, logistical, financial, and analytical support to the JIT, participating in 19 coordination meetings with representatives of the group and other national authorities investigating international crimes committed in Ukraine.
Ukraine, Poland and Lithuania established a joint working group to investigate war crimes committed by Russian troops in Ukraine on March 25, 2022. Later, Estonia, Latvia, Slovakia, and Romania joined the group.
The United States announced its cooperation with the JIT in March 2023. In addition, Eurojust and, for the first time in its history, the Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court are members of the group.
Among other things, the JIT member countries communicate with Ukrainian citizens – victims and witnesses – who are on their territory after they fled Ukraine because of Russia’s war.