Kremlin dismisses ‘outrageous’ ICC claims
Moscow is under no obligation to acknowledge the arrest warrant for President Vladimir Putin announced by the International Criminal Court on Friday, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has said.
“We consider the very premise outrageous and unacceptable,” Peskov told reporters when asked about the warrant for purported war crimes. “Russia, like many other states, does not recognize the jurisdiction of this court. Accordingly, the Russian Federation considers any of its pronouncements null and void from the legal standpoint.”
The ICC on Friday issued warrants for the arrest of Putin and Russia’s Children’s Ombudsman Maria Lvova-Belova, accusing them of “unlawful transfer” of children from Ukraine to Russia. They claim Putin and Lvova-Belova bear both individual and command responsibility for the alleged war crime.
The Russian authorities have evacuated thousands of residents from Donetsk, Lugansk, Zaporozhye and Kherson – four regions that overwhelmingly voted to join Russia last September – to the interior, due the deliberate shelling of civilians by Ukrainian forces, often using NATO-supplied weapons.
Neither Russia nor Ukraine have ratified the Rome Statute that established the ICC. The US, which underwrote the tribunals for Yugoslavia and Rwanda on which the ICC was based, adopted a law authorizing a military invasion of the Netherlands if any American is ever detained by the court.