Join the growing global movement demanding a Special Tribunal for Russian aggression

You can help make a difference in just 5 minutes.

Join the growing global movement demanding a Special Tribunal for Russian aggression

Few were talking about justice in the early months of Russia's full scale war against Ukraine.

Well, except the experts.

The need for a Special Tribunal backed by the UN General Assembly was first argued by top experts in international law like Nuremberg prosecutor Ben Ferencz, leading peace and security advocates like former UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and the Elders group, and countries like the Baltic states, which had long predicted worsening Russian aggression in the absence of legal consequences.

Momentum for a Special Tribunal is building.

More recently, policymakers and lawmakers around the world have increasingly recognized that only meaningful justice can end the cycle of aggression. And only a Special Tribunal backed by the UN General Assembly can deliver that meaningful justice.

It's not a case of whether they'll be a Special Tribunal, but when - and how much more worsening aggression and war crimes the world will accept until then.

That's why we demand a #SpecialTribunalNow. More than 2 Million people signed a petition demanding exactly that. Now we need to make that support visible - in social media feeds and on the streets.

The hashtag started with a tweet thread.

In May 2023, the respected British journalist Edward Lucas became the first person to use the #SpecialTribunalNow hashtag in a viral tweet thread convincingly arguing the case for a Special Tribunal on Russian aggression.

That gained particular attention among volunteers in Ukraine working hard to deliver supplies to vulnerable communities and frontline defenders, such as at Help99. Their work is essential, but they can only patch over the problem of aggression as best they can. They know only meaningful justice will end the cycle of aggression once and for all.

The campaign was spurred by a tragedy.

In June, the acclaimed Ukrainian writer Victoria Amelina was murdered in a Russian war crime while documenting Russian war crimes. Amelina's dream, as she had previously tweeted, was a Special Tribunal on Russian aggression.

This website was therefore launched in her memory to ensure her dream lives on and becomes reality.

It initially contained a single article outlining the case for a Special Tribunal and a call for people to show their support by simply posting a selfie with the hashtag. People around the world responded and it gave us the determination to go bigger with it.

We're now a movement

We're still not an organisation. And we're certainly not going to ask you for money.

But the only thing that's delaying a Special Tribunal for Russian aggression is political will. The path to meaningful justice through the UN General Assembly is clear and achievable. It's based on precedent, international law, and the UN Charter.

It's just needs more support. That's why all of us everywhere have a duty to raise our voices for a #SpecialTribunalNow.

The cofounders of our movement include Ukrainian activist Bogdana Fedun, French businessman and aid supplier to Ukraine Arnaud Castaignet, Ukrainian international law expert and CEO of Lift99 startup hub in Kyiv Tanya Chaikovska, and the British journalist Edward Lucas.

Your support is crucial. Here's an overview of how you can get involved to.

First, remember the Hague is not enough

'Putin to the Hague'. That was one of the first things that many of us shouted when Russia launched its full scale war last year. We've held up placards with that demand and posted countless memes about it.

But we now understand the Hague is not ready. It's not enough to just call for Putin to be sent to the Hague when the International Criminal Court is not yet able to prosecute Russia's crime of aggression - due to an absurd loophole.

The goal of #SpecialTribunalNow is to focus that 'Putin-to-the-Hague energy' into supporting the clear steps needed for real, meaningful justice.

We demand that the UN General Assembly immediately backs a Special International Tribunal for the individuals responsible for planning, preparing, initiating, and executing Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine.

So we think any discussion of Russia's brutal war of aggression against Ukraine - and the horrific crimes it enables on a daily basis - is incomplete without also discussing the Special Tribunal needed for justice. And we want to demonstrate how widespread support there is globally for that Special Tribunal.

So, instead of just saying 'Putin to the Hague, shout: Special Tribunal now.

So the first way you can support the campaign is simple:

Use the hashtag #SpecialTribunalNow - or simply call for a Special Tribunal now - as much as you can in relation to Russia's atrocities. Be angry. But try to focus on that key outcome that the victims need.

This bit takes 5 minutes

Next, let's bring the #SpecialTribunalNow message into the real world to show the huge number of real people supporting the campaign in as many different places as possible.

Grab a pen and paper. Make your own sign declaring 'Special Tribunal Now' or '#SpecialTribunalNow'.

Grab your camera and snap a picture. You don't have to show your face if you don't want to, but let's show that we are real - unlike many of the accounts supporting Russia's war.

Post it to your favourite social media networks with the hashtag typed in too.

You can add an explanation as to why you support a Special Tribunal or just let the picture speak for itself. You can also tag the campaign social media handles (see next section) or link back to this website,, so more people can read about the case for a Special Tribunal and understand our campaign.

​If many thousands of us do that then we can reach huge numbers of people around the world with our message in their social media feeds.

If you've literally got five minutes, then a selfie from anywhere works great. However, if you've got more time, go bigger...

If you've got more than 5 minutes

A selfie taken at home with a handwritten sign will go a long way to helping support the campaign.

But if you've got more time then here's some ideas about how you can take it to another level.

Firstly, find an interesting location for your picture that shows where in the world your support is coming from. We want to show that our campaign is truly global. It could be next to a recognizable landmark or just a setting that helps convey the diversity of places supporting the campaign.

Secondly, you can also grab your friends or invite strangers to hold up the sign with you so you can get a group picture.

Arrange to gather in one spot, such as outside a Russian embassy, your busy town centre, or anywhere that suits you all. You could also march, bringing the message to as many people as possible on your way.

Also, there's no limits to your creativity about how to display the message. It doesn't just have to be written on paper. '#SpecialTribunalNow' or 'Special Tribunal Now' could be printed on a banner, projected onto the side of a building, or written in sand at the beach.

Join us on social media

We want to compile your images from around the world to show the strength of global support for a Special Tribunal.

We'll do that on this website and on our social media accounts.

We currently have accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Youtube, as well as a Facebook group. They are quite small at the moment but are growing. So please do follow us and tag us, in addition to using the hashtag.

As momentum builds, we'll also use those accounts to discuss and organise ever bigger and bolder ways to broadcast our message. So watch this space.

In the meantime, let’s make sure the whole world is in no doubt: Only a UN-backed Special Tribunal will end the cycle of aggressive wars. We demand a #SpecialTribunalNow.