The International Criminal Court has issued a warrant for Russian President Vladimir Putin’s arrest for committing war crimes.
The ICC says Putin is personally responsible for the abductions of children from Ukraine. According to the Associated Press, this is the first time the ICC has issued such a warrant against a leader of one of the five permanent U.N. Security Council members.
Moscow denied the allegations, and the country does not recognize the ICC’s jurisdiction.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said the ICC’s decision was “legally void” and called the court’s decision to issue the warrant “outrageous and unacceptable.”
Still, the arrest warrant is harmful to the Russian president.
“So Putin might go to China, Syria, Iran, his … few allies, but he just won’t travel to the rest of the world and won’t travel to ICC member states who he believes would … arrest him,” said international law and armed conflict expert at Rutgers University Adil Ahmad Haque.
Former international prosecutor David Crane said Putin will be labeled a “pariah.”
“He has lost all his political credibility around the world. Any world leader who stands by him will be shamed as well,” he added.
The ICC also issued an arrest warrant for Maria Lvova-Belova. Lvova-Belova is the commissioner for Children’s Rights in the Office of the President of the Russian Federation.
She denied the allegations, saying in a seemingly sarcastic statement, “It is great that the international community has appreciated the work to help the children of our country, that we do not leave them in war zones, that we take them out, we create good conditions for them, that we surround them with loving, caring people.”
Ukraine’s human rights chief has reported that according to Ukraine’s National Information Bureau, some 16,226 children were deported from the country following the attack on Ukraine. Just 208 children have returned to their home country.
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Matthew Stockman/Staff
Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.