The International Criminal Court issues an arrest warrant for Vladimir Putin


A meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Russia's Commissioner for Children's Rights Maria Lvova Belova, both of whom were targeted by soldiers at the government residence in Novo-Ogaryovo in the Moscow region on February 16, 2023. Both are targets under an ICC arrest warrant.

In the midst of the war in Ukraine, Karim Khan, the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, wanted to strike loud and clear. More than a year after Russian tanks rolled into the neighboring country, Russian President Vladimir Putin is under an International Criminal Court arrest warrant for war crimes. “For the first time, the court is performing the function assigned to it: proving that there is no impunity for a head of state,” A lawyer in The Hague commented shortly after the announcement. For several weeks, many have wondered about the Attorney General’s overtures. Will he attack the head of the Kremlin? Are you aiming for the highest position in the hierarchy? Or start targeting officers?

The arrest warrant issued by the judges of the International Criminal Court is aimed at the head of a nuclear state, a member of the Security Council, who is suspected of war crimes for the deportation of Ukrainian children to Russia, and the forcible transfer of other children to occupied territories. lands in the east of the country. There is “reasonable grounds to believe that Vladimir Putin is personally responsible for these crimes”the judges said in a statement. The alleged co-author of this “crimes”, Russia’s Commissioner for Children’s Rights, Maria Lvova Belova, 38, is also under an arrest warrant. They are related “The removal of hundreds of children from orphanages and homes” In Ukraine, who would have been then “giving up for adoption” In Russia, the prosecutor general adds in a press release.

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Exhibition decrees

In July, Maria Lvova Belova publicly encouraged her compatriots to adopt Ukrainian children, telling them that she had taken a teenager from Mariupol in the Donetsk region. Moscow claims it is carrying out humanitarian action, aimed at protecting young Ukrainians. But for the ICC, this works “Showing an intent to remove these children permanently from their country”. Decrees of the Russian president to speed up the granting of Russian citizenship to Ukrainian children, and then their adoption by Russian families, should become exhibits at a future trial in The Hague, if Vladimir Putin is transferred there.

At this point the Prosecutor presented the procedure in the context of a first case which he was sure would arouse strong feelings. We cannot allow children to be treated as spoils of war. Karim Khan said. According to the Ukrainian authorities, more than 16,226 children have been deported to Russia since the conflict began.

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