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Polish Foreign Ministry welcomes ICC arrest warrant for Putin over war crimes in Ukraine

18.03.2023 07:30
Poland’s foreign ministry has welcomed the decision by the International Criminal Court to issue an arrest warrant for Russian President Vladimir Putin, accusing him of being responsible for war crimes committed during his invasion of Ukraine.
Polish foreign ministry HQ in Warsaw.
Polish foreign ministry HQ in Warsaw.Lukas Plewnia from Berlin, Deutschland, CC BY-SA 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

The Polish foreign ministry expressed its satisfaction at the ICC move in a statement published on Friday night, the state news agency PAP reported.

The warrant of arrest issued by the judges of the Hague-based court alleges that Putin bears responsibility for the “unlawful deportation” of people from occupied areas of Ukraine to Russia, especially children.   

The ICC said it had reasonable grounds to believe the Russian president had committed the criminal acts directly, as well as working with others, according to British broadcaster the BBC.

Separately, the court issued a warrant for Maria Lvova-Belova, Russia's Commissioner for Children's Rights, on the same charges, the Reuters news agency reported.

‘First step towards bringing Russian authorities to trial’: Polish foreign ministry

Polish foreign ministry spokesman Łukasz Jasina said in a statement on Friday night: “The Foreign Ministry of the Republic of Poland receives with satisfaction the decision by the International Criminal Court to issue a warrant of arrest for Vladimir Putin (the President of the Russian Federation) and Maria Lvova-Belova (the Commissioner for Children's Rights under the President of the Russian Federation) on suspicion of having committed war crimes consisting in unlawful deportation of people (children) and unlawful transfer of people (children) from occupied areas of Ukraine to the Russian Federation.”  

Jasina added: “The decision marks the ICC’s first firm formal step towards bringing Russia’s highest authorities to trial and ties in with wider efforts of the international community to hold Russia accountable for its war crimes in Ukraine.”  

The ICC’s decision to issue an arrest warrant for Putin obligates the court’s 123 member countries to arrest the Russian leader and transfer him to The Hague, Netherlands, for trial, if he sets foot on their land, Britain's The Guardian newspaper noted.

Russian forces have perpetrated “a wide range of war crimes” during their assault on Ukraine, including willful killings, systematic torture and deportation of children, according to a new report from a UN-supported inquiry.

Saturday is day 388 of Russia’s war on Ukraine. 


Source: PAP, gov.pl, wpolityce.pl, BBCThe Guardian