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International Criminal Court issues arrest warrant for Putin over alleged war crimes

Russia is not a signatory to the Rome Statute of the ICC.

Photo by Carmen Rodriguez on Flickr / CC0 1.0

The International Criminal Court (ICC) has issued arrest warrants for Russia’s President Vladimir Putin and Children’s Rights Commissioner Maria Lvova-Belova. It alleges they committed war crimes by unlawfully deporting and transferring children from occupied areas in Ukraine to Russia.

ICC Prosecutor Karim Khan says children cannot be treated as “spoils of war.”

Russia’s foreign ministry spokeswoman says the ICC announcement is negligible as it is not a signatory to the Rome Statute of the ICC and is not obliged to follow its rulings.

Echoing her, the Russian Security Council’s deputy chairman says the arrest warrant is worthless. Meanwhile, the Chairman of Russia’s lower house of parliament has said any attack on President Putin is an act of aggression against the country.

Ukrainian, EU and Canadian foreign affairs officials have welcomed the ICC decision, as have Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International.