Russia will be held accountable for atrocities, despite its denial, US envoy to OSCE says
Michael Carpenter (Photo -

As mounting evidence of horrific Russian atrocities in Ukraine piles up, the United States is making clear that Moscow cannot evade accountability through denial and deception, said the US permanent representative to the OSCE, Michael Carpenter.

Undaunted by Moscow's attempts to shield itself from accountability, Carpenter fired back at Russia's demands to avoid discussing its war crimes at the OSCE. The ambassador refused to let Moscow dismiss well-documented atrocities in Ukraine as "confrontational," "biased," or "politically motivated."

"When one participating States blatantly lies in this Council about its preparations for a surprise attack against its neighbor, illegally uses force to launch the biggest land war since World War II, occupies its neighbor’s territory, establishes a network of "filtration centers," engages in the most brutal and systematic methods of torture against civilian hostages, including electroshocks and rape, is it bias to call this out?" Carpenter said.

More than 60 meetings of the OSCE Permanent Council were convened after the start of the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine, and each time Russian representatives complained of "bias".

"Was it political expediency when participating States reacted in disgust to the evidence that members of Russia’s forces carried out targeted, organized killings of more than 400 civilians in Bucha, many of whom were found shot dead, hands tied behind their backs?" the American ambassador added.

He also recalled the death of 59 civilians as a result of a Russian missile strike in the village of Hroza in Kharkiv Oblast, where no international mission found any evidence of the presence of the Ukrainian military.

The OSCE perfectly understands why the Russian Federation tries to avoid discussing its atrocities and abuses and does its best to limit itself to procedural debates or raise any topic other than its aggressive war against Ukraine, the US representative said. "Who would want to admit to such brutality?  But here’s another fact: we have an obligation to raise these atrocities."

Carpenter stressed that Russia, like all OSCE participating states, "agreed to uphold the Helsinki Final Act and the Charter of Paris, and Russia is obligated to comply with international law."

"So when we call Russia to account for its unconscionable behavior, we are not being arbitrary, opportunistic, or biased.  We are acting in accordance with our principles, the rule of law, and, yes, our own commitments," he said.

In his speech, the diplomat also condemned the Russian attack, which caused damage to a civilian ship when it entered the Ukrainian seaport of Pivdennyi.

"We will continue to call out these monstrous actions for what they are, and fulfill our commitment to hold the Russian Federation, a participating State at this organization, accountable for its behavior," Carpenter concluded.

On June 22, Carpenter said at the OSCE Permanent Council that "just as Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine is failing, so too is its war against the truth."