Skip to main content
Open this photo in gallery:

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba speaks to the media at the international peace conference 'Restoring Justice for Ukraine' in The Hague, Netherlands, on April 2.Piroschka Van De Wouw/Reuters

Ukrainians can begin filing claims for damages they have suffered in Russia’s invasion at a newly-established register based in The Hague, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said on Tuesday.

The register will initially focus on damage to real estate but should be expanded to also include other kinds of material and other damage, Kuleba said at a conference organized by the Dutch government to discuss legal accountability.

Ukraine wants to use frozen Russian assets to pay for war damages and reparations to victims.

“This is the first material step that is being made,” Kuleba said, adding that claims could be filed by anyone from Tuesday.

“It is no less important to establish an international compensation mechanism in full and confiscate frozen Russian assets,” he told the conference.

Ukrainian citizens and also foreigners who suffered damage on the territory of Ukraine following Russia’s full-scale invasion in February 2022 can file claims with the register. They can apply via a special app also used to settle legal transactions and keep official documents digitally.

Ukraine expects at least eight million individual claims for damages to be filed, Zakhar Tropin, a lawyer for the Ukrainian department of justice, told Reuters.

The World Bank estimated in February that Kyiv would need $486 billion to rebuild the country, which has been devastated by Russia’s invasion. Ukraine has said that amount could double if compensation for the war’s victims is taken into account.

The Register of Damage for Ukraine has been established under the umbrella of the Council of Europe, a rights watchdog, and has 44 members, including most European Union members, Britain, Japan, and the United States.

Its establishment was recommended by a U.N. General Assembly resolution last year calling for Russia to be held accountable for its invasion and recognizing that Moscow is responsible for reparations in Ukraine.

Moscow says it will do everything possible to stop the West “plundering” state assets to pay for reparations to Ukraine, and Russia’s U.N. ambassador said the provisions of the U.N. resolution were “legally null and void.”

Follow related authors and topics

Authors and topics you follow will be added to your personal news feed in Following.

Interact with The Globe