Kuleba commented on reports that individual countries that are signatories to the Rome Statute may refuse to arrest Putin if he comes to these countries.
Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba says a behind-the-scenes diplomatic battle is starting to enforce the International Criminal Court’s warrant for the arrest of Russian President Vladimir Putin suspected of committing war crimes. According to an UNIAN correspondent, Kuleba said this during a conversation with journalist Vadim Karpyak on Instagram.
The head of the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry commented on reports that individual countries that are signatories to the Rome Statute may refuse to arrest Putin if he comes to these countries. “Now there will be a huge behind-the-scenes diplomatic battle for respect for obligations under the Rome Statute,” Kuleba said.
The minister added that those countries that support the ICC will now “all join in this behind-the-scenes diplomatic battle” in order to enforce the warrant.
“We take the example of the same Republic of South Africa. Here the question is not even Putin, and not Ukraine. But the fact that if they openly ignore the order of the International Criminal Court, this will destroy the International Criminal Court. Therefore, the ICC itself is now interested in observance and respect for his acts,” Kuleba said.
At the same time, he added that “South Africa will not abandon Putin on principle, because he is their political ally and they even held joint exercises.” “But I don’t think that South Africa will be able to openly ignore the ICC warrant,” Kuleba stressed.
At the same time, he is confident that he will be able to “survive and not such problems.” “It’s better to fight attempts not to execute a warrant for Putin’s arrest than to fight for such a warrant to be issued in principle. And believe me, it was not self-evident. And we must give credit to the International Criminal Court for deciding on such a decision. Because if a warrant has already been issued for Putin’s complicity in the kidnapping of Ukrainian children, then automatically in all other crimes that will be considered, he will also be among the accused,” Kuleba said.
Putin’s arrest warrant – what is known
On March 17, the second pre-trial chamber of the International Criminal Court issued arrest warrants for Russian President Vladimir Putin and Presidential Commissioner for Children’s Rights Maria Lvova-Belova. They are suspected of illegal forced transfer of Ukrainian children.
This decision means that they can be arrested on the territory of all countries that have ratified the Rome Statute.
The chief prosecutor of the ICC noted that Putin will stand trial regardless of whether the Russian Federation recognizes this decision. In turn, experts point out that international sanctions will not be lifted from Russia until the country extradites Putin to The Hague.