Unrecognized non-state entities in the temporarily occupied territories of the East of Ukraine are not subjects of responsibility, unlike the state.
The Deputy Prosecutor General of Ukraine in 2019-2021 Gyunduz Mamedov commented that "the fact is that it is the state that can be brought to justice in international courts. As soon as one of the international courts recognizes the conflict in the East of Ukraine as international, this will be an important precedent in other international courts. You can get a penalty from the state for violation of the laws of war, for war crimes, for violation of international humanitarian and property law. As soon as the state of the Russian Federation is recognized as a party to the conflict, the state of Ukraine represented by state institutions, state-owned companies, private companies and individuals can put forward legal claims against the Russian Federation. These claims can be brought forward in arbitration and other international courts,” he notes.
Gyunduz Mamedov gives examples of how it works. For example, the Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court recognized the conflict in Crimea as international. “This allows Ukrainian private and state-owned companies to file claims against the Russian Federation for damages in international courts. This allows citizens to make claims against the Russian Federation and demand compensation for damage, as well as demand responsibility for international crimes committed during the occupation of Crimea,” the lawyer summed up.