The Webinar “How to Ensure a Fair Trial in War? 15:30-17:00 EET

15April 2021

Ensuring fair court proceedings can be challenging even in peacetime. The situation of an armed conflict adds an additional layer of difficulties. 


The access to occupied or temporarily uncontrolled territories is limited and the documentation of alleged violations in such areas is dangerous or, in some cases, even impossible. Further, investigators, prosecutors, defence counsel and judges might lack experience of working on certain atrocities such as war crimes or crimes against humanity. The adjudication of certain types of criminal conduct such as conflict-related sexual violence is complicated by stigmas, taboos and the consequential “invisibility” of such issues. One of the most acute problems is the polarisation of a society exhausted by war. Such circumstances catalyse the dangerous demand for quick convictions. The latter are needed for the deceptive creation of an “us” and “they” narrative and are often secured at the expense of due process.

The speakers will analyse the difficulties of ensuring equal access to justice of all participants of armed conflicts; the use of open source evidence in atrocities proceedings; the role of “judgments” rendered in non-recognised territories and other issues, which will help better understand not only how to guaranty fair trials in armed conflict but also how to make such proceedings an integral component of reconciliation.




– Maria Tomak, Coordinator, Media Initiative for Human Rights;

– Dr Kateryna Busol, Lawyer, Centre for Defence Strategies.



The event will be held in English and through the Zoom platform, simultaneous translation into Ukrainian will be provided.

If you would like to participate in the discussion and/or send your questions and comments to the Zoom chat, please register here:  

You can also follow the webinar on other platforms. The original English discussion will be broadcasted on the YouTube page of the Ukrainian Helsinki Human Rights Union: The Ukrainian translation of the discussion will be broadcasted on the Facebook pages of the organisers:,



Media Initiative for Human Rights

USAID Human Rights in Action Program

Ukrainian Helsinki Human Rights Union

Mission of the President of Ukraine in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea


This event is a part of #InternationalLawTalks – a series of webinars aimed to facilitate qualitative, interesting and accessible discussions on the topical issues of international law in Ukraine. 

For each session, the webinars bring together distinguished professionals from Ukraine and abroad. They contextualise the armed conflict, peace and transitional justice issues in Ukraine within the larger dynamics of international law and international relations. 

The aim of the project is twofold: to help Ukrainian legal professionals and the general public see the wider horizons of their native context and to provide more local and regional insight to international colleagues. 


A series of webinars #InternationalLawTalks is made possible thanks to USAID Human Rights in Action Program.

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