University of Bergen

International Conference: War against Ukraine - Accountability and Responses

The University of Bergen and the Embassy of Ukraine in Norway are hosting a high-profile international conference on the war against Ukraine, one year after the start of Russia’s full-scale military attack.

Internasjonal konferanse: Krigen mot Ukraina

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A year has passed since the start of Russia’s full-scale military attack on Ukraine on the 24th of February 2022. To mark the date, the University of Bergen and the Embassy of Ukraine in Norway are hosting a high-profile international conference on the war. The discussions will focus on how to secure justice for Ukraine.

Watch the conference here, Friday from 10.00.

There is an international need for effective justice mechanisms. Faced with the violations of international law in Ukraine, we have invited scholars and representatives from a variety of organizations to discuss the preconditions for possible international prosecution of the crime of aggression, war crimes, and other international crimes.  

The conference will also address Norway’s response to the war in Ukraine, including military support, the importance of continued university education, supporting civil society organizations, and broad economic cooperation in times of war. 


    Part 1: The war in Ukraine since February 24 2022

    10.00 - 11.00
    • Welcome, Margareth Hagen, Rector, University of Bergen
    • Opening speech, Jonas Gahr Støre, Prime Minister of Norway
    • Opening address from the Office of the President of Ukraine, Dr. Ihor Zhovkva, Deputy Head of the Office of the President of Ukraine
    • Live from Ukraine, Bent Skjærstad, Journalist, TV 2
    • Panel discussion, UiB-students Olena Mordas and Volodymyr Ilkiv, Prime Minister of Norway, Jonas Gahr Støre, and Rector, Margareth Hagen
    • One year since the start of the full-scale Russian assault on Ukraine, Andrew Wilson, Professor, University College London, and Senior Policy Fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations

    Part 2: Justice

    12.00 - 14.30

    Subpart 2.1 - Accountability for the Crime of Aggression

    • Introduction to relevant International Law, Terje Einarsen, Professor, University of Bergen
    • The Crime of Aggression and its Application to Ukraine, Claus Kress, Professor, University of Cologne
    • Ukraine’s position on the Establishment of the Special Tribunal for the Crime of Aggression, Dr. Anton Korynevych, Ambassador-at-Large of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine
    • The Civil Society Perspective on Accountability for the Crime of Aggression, Sasha Romantsova, Executive Director at Center for Civil Liberties (The Nobel Peace Prize Laureate 2022)

    Subpart 2.2 - Accountability for War Crimes and Other International Crimes

    • Russian Captivity: My Own Experience, Stanislav Aseyev, Journalist and Writer, Founder of the Justice Initiative Fund (Free Media Awards 2020)
    • Documenting Russian War Crimes in Ukraine and the Quest for Justice, Roman Avramenko, Executive Director of Truth Hounds, Photo and Video Correspondent
    • Requirements for Prosecuting War Crimes Committed in Ukraine, Ilia Utmelidze, Director of Case Matrix Network, CILRAP
    • Closing Remarks – Reflections on Models of International Justice and Key Rules of Warfare, Gunnar Ekeløve-Slydal, Deputy Secretary General, the Norwegian Helsinki Committee

    Part 3: Norway and the War – Cooperating with Ukraine

    14.50 - 16.00
    • The war from a military perspective – Developments on the battlefield, Palle Ydstebø, Lieutenant Colonel, The Norwegian Armed Forces
    • Education in times of war, Kseniia Smyrnova, Professor and Vice-Rector, Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv
    • Lifting up the Ukrainian War Generation, Ana Perona Fjeldstad, Executive Director of the European Wergeland Centre
    • Trade cooperation, Ketil E. Bøe, Chairperson NUCC, Compliance Committee Chair, Member of the Exec.Committee, Partner Wikborg Rein
    • Why is supporting Civilians of Ukraine Important?, Berit Lindeman, Secretary General, the Norwegian Helsinki Committee
    • Norway’s Support for Ukraine: priorities and future perspectives, Dr. Liliia Honcharevych, Chargé d'affaires of the Embassy of Ukraine in Norway

    On the evening February 24, (19.00-20.30) there will be a benefit concert at Bergen Domkirke featuring Torleif Torgersen, a piano professor at the Grieg Academy, and Hanna Veits, a Grieg Academy alumna and violinist. Read more about the concert here.