International Criminal Court Issues Arrest Warrant For Putin, He Allegedly Deported Ukraine Children Illegally

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International Criminal Court Issues Arrest Warrant For Putin On 17 Mar

The International Criminal Court (ICC) issued an arrest warrant for Russian President Vladimir Putin over his alleged involvement in a scheme that illegally deported children from Ukraine.

In a statement on Friday (17 Mar), the ICC stated that there are “reasonable grounds” to believe Putin holds “individual criminal responsibility” for the alleged crimes.

Source: Renato Leproux on Flickr

A Kremlin spokesperson, however, described the ICC’s decision as “outrageous and unacceptable” while calling the court and its decisions “legally void”.

International Criminal Court issues arrest warrant for Putin

On Friday (17 Mar), the ICC revealed that it has issued an arrest warrant for Russian President Vladimir Putin for the alleged war crime of deporting children from occupied territories in Ukraine to Russia.

Source: Google Maps

The statement said that there’s “reasonable ground” to believe Putin bears “individual criminal responsibility” for the following crimes:

  • Committing the acts directly or jointly with/through others
  • Failing to exercise control over civilian and military subordinates who committed the acts

ICC also issued a similar arrest warrant for the Russian presidential commissioner for children’s rights Maria Lvova-Belova.

The ICC was set up in 2002 and prosecutes individuals for international crimes such as:

  • genocide
  • war crimes
  • crimes against humanity
  • crimes of aggression

This is the first time the court has issued a warrant against a leader of one of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council.

Russia dismisses move, Ukraine welcomes announcement

In response to the announcement, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said that Russia does not recognise the ICC, reported AP News.

Describing its decisions as “legally void”, Peskov also called the court’s move against Putin and Lvova-Belova “outrageous and unacceptable”.

Maria Zakharova, a spokesperson for Russia’s foreign affairs ministry, issued a similar response.

On her Telegram channel, Zakharova pointed out that Russia is “not a member of the Rome Statute of the ICC and bears no obligations under it”.

As such, the spokesperson said any arrests coming from ICC is “legally null and void” for Russia.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, however, lauded ICC’s decision. He pointed out that there have been over 16,000 cases of “forced deportation” of children from Ukraine to Russia.

He also expressed thanks to ICC, its Prosecutor Karim Khan, as well as others around the world for “helping” in their fight for justice.

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