WASHINGTON (Fwrd Axis) — President Joe Biden on Monday called for Russian President Vladimir Putin to stand trial for war crimes, calling the massacre of civilians in the town of Bucha “brutal” and “outrageous.”
Speaking to reporters after returning to the White House from Delaware, Biden called for evidence to be gathered to put Putin on trial, saying once again the Russian leader is “a war criminal”.
“He is a war criminal,” the President said. “This guy is brutal, and what’s happening in Bucha is outrageous and everyone’s seen it. We have to gather the information. We have to continue to provide Ukraine with the weapons they need to continue the fight and we have to get all the details so this can be an actual — have a war-crime trial.”
The President said he plans to impose more sanctions on Russia for its conduct over the weekend.
“I’ll let you know,” Biden replied when asked if more sanctions can be expected.
White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan said later Monday that the US hasn’t yet seen evidence of “systematic” killings to call what’s happening in Ukraine a genocide.
“Based on what we have seen so far — we have seen atrocities. We have seen war crimes. We have not seen a level of systemic deprivation of life of the Ukrainian people to rise to the level of genocide,” Sullivan said at Monday’s press briefing.
“Russia will pay a severe price,” Sullivan added. “We have communicated to them directly. We have coordinated with our allies and partners and I’m not going to go for the specifics here.”
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has said sanctions from the West would not be “enough” to respond to the crimes Ukrainians say happened in Bucha, near Kyiv, where images and videos show the massacre of civilians, some of which had been tortured and women been raped.
Over 300 residents of the town had been killed, according to Bucha’s mayor. However, Russia has denied allegations that its troops killed civilians in Bucha.
“Obviously, the ICC is one venue where war crimes have been tried in the past, but there have been other examples,” Sullivan said. “So there’s work to be done to work out the specifics of that.”