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Mary Ellen O’Connell, professor of law and international peace studies at the University of Notre Dame, told OSV News in an email that ”while there is likely a good case that Russia has breached the (Genocide) Convention, the more important focus now should be on the violation of the United Nations Charter prohibition on the use of force.”

As the founding document of the U.N., the charter specifies that all U.N. members ”shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state.”

”There is no doubt Russia has committed one of the most egregious breaches of the Charter since 1945,” said O’Connell. ”That violation has led to all the human rights violations and war crimes that have followed.”

Russia claims the U.S. ”also commits serious violations of the prohibition” with ”ongoing drone strikes and commando operations in Syria, Somalia and Iraq,” she said, adding while ”pointing to the law breach of another is never a defense … the U.S. should comply fully with the Charter.”

O’Connell also clarified that ”Ukraine is fighting in compliance with the U.N. Charter and all states assisting Ukraine are in compliance, too.”