After Russia was accused of bombing civilians, an investigation into possible war crimes in Ukraine has been undertaken.
The International Criminal Court (ICC) chief prosecutor said evidence was being compiled on alleged war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide.
This comes after 38 nations gathered to deliberate the crisis in Ukraine to the prosecutor’s office.
Nexus News recalls that cities including Kyiv, Kharkiv and Kherson have encountered heavy shelling.
Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky has already accused Moscow of war crimes, after it launched air strikes on the country’s second city of Kharkiv, killing civilians.
The mayor of Kherson on Wednesday said Russian forces had invaded the key port – the first major city to be taken by Moscow since it invaded a week ago.
Earlier this week, the ICC’s chief prosecutor Karim Khan said he planned to open an investigation into events in Ukraine “as rapidly as possible” but the referral from 38 nations – including the UK, France and Germany – allowed it to be launched without the need for judicial approval.
He will look at past and present allegations of war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide, and will go as far back as 2013, before Russia’s annexation of Crimea the following year.
According to Ukraine’s state emergency service, more than 2,000 civilians had been killed since the Russian invasion began last Thursday, although the figure has not been independently verified.
The United Nations’ high commissioner for refugees said some one million people had already fled the country.
Map showing areas of Ukraine that are under Russian control.
The UN General Assembly on Wednesday voted overwhelmingly to stress an immediate end to the invasion of Ukraine.
Just four countries – Belarus, North Korea, Eritrea and Syria – joined Russia in opposing a motion calling for the withdrawal of all occupying forces, while 35 nations abstained.
General Assembly resolutions are not legally binding but the move further isolates Russia diplomatically.