On International Women’s Day 2022, we reflect on the situation in Ukraine

“The Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb) stands in solidarity and expresses deepest sympathy with the people of Ukraine. Whilst we strongly condemn the actions of Russia, we continue to stand with the Russian people who oppose the Russian invasion of Ukraine and to all those who support the rule of law around the world. 

CIArb believes in the rule of law and the pursuit of justice. As such, we welcome the move by 39 countries who came together last week to expedite an International Criminal Court investigation through State party referral. It is the largest referral of its kind in the history of the ICC.

Karim Khan QC, a senior English barrister who has been a prosecutor at the ICC since June 2021, announced the launch of an active investigation into the situation in Ukraine, which he will be leading. He stated there was “a reasonable basis” to believe that both alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity had been committed there. Mr Khan was awarded a Diploma in International Arbitration in 2018 by the CIArb.

Today we celebrate International Women’s Day. However, we do this with our thoughts with all those in Ukraine, their family and friends and all those affected by the invasion. CIArb recalls the UN Security Council Resolution 1325that expresses “concern that civilians, particularly women and children” are “disproportionally affected by armed conflict” and are “increasingly targeted by combatants and armed elements.”

CIArb notes that Russia held the presidency of the UNSC in October 2020 and put forward a resolution (S/2020/1054) which sought to water down and omit previously agreed standards on core issues. These included women’s human rights, prevention of conflict-related sexual violence and women’s full, equal and meaningful participation in all aspects of peace and security. Fortunately, this resolution was ultimately not passed, due to several countries abstaining from the vote.

CIArb strongly condemns any erosion of the rule of law and women’s rights around the world and draws attention to the impact of this on Ukraine on International Women’s Day.”

Catherine Dixon, Director General, CIArb

Watch a recording of CIArb's Breaking the Bias event held on International Women's Day 2022. 

Click here