When asked as he left the White House if Moscow was deliberately targeting civilians as it continues its invasion of Ukraine, Biden said, “It’s clear they are.”
However, Biden said it was too early to determine whether or not the Russian army has committed war crimes in Ukraine, declaring that “we are following it very closely.”
Earlier this week the International Criminal Court opened a probe into allegations of war crimes against the Russian forces in Ukraine.
Barrages from the Russian military have hit residential neighborhoods in Kharkiv and a major television tower and the Babyn Yar Holocaust memorial site in Kyiv this week.
U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson told Parliament that attacks by the Russian army in Ukraine qualify as war crimes, CNN reported.
“What we have seen already from Vladimir Putin’s regime in the use of the munitions that they have already been dropping on innocent civilians in my view already fully qualifies as a war crime, and I know that the ICC prosecutor is already investigating, and I am sure the whole House will support that,” Johnson said.
Biden also said that “nothing is off the table” when asked on if the U.S. is considering banning the import of Russian oil, The Hill reported.
The U.S., along with European allies, has imposed sanctions on Russian banks and elites, including Putin himself, and has also cut off Russia from its foreign currency reserves. However, the West has so far not placed sanctions on the country’s energy industry due to the heavy reliance of Europe on Russian gas.