ICC orders Vladimir Putin to be arrested for war crimes against Ukrainian children
The International Criminal Court (ICC) issued warrants for the unlikely arrest of Russian leader Vladimir Putin and Russian Confederation for Children’s Rights commissioner Alekseyevna Lvova-Belov.
Putin, who ordered his military to invade Ukraine 13 months ago, “is allegedly responsible for the war crime of unlawful deportation of population (children) and that of unlawful transfer of population (children) from occupied areas of Ukraine to the Russian Federation” the ICC charged Friday.
The same claims were made against Lvova-Belova. She’s a 38-year-old mother to at least ten children, some of whom were adopted, according to CNN. One boy she spoke of adopting last year is a teenager from Mariupol — a Ukrainian city invaded and occupied by Russia. Lvova-Belova claims that once Ukrainian children are brought to her country, they come to “love” Russia.
“There are reasonable grounds to believe that Mr. Putin bears individual criminal responsibility for the aforementioned crimes,” according to the ICC.
[ Why left and right agree on Putin ]
The international court, headquartered in the Netherlands and representing 123 nations, accuses Putin of committing the alleged acts “directly, jointly with others and/or through others.”
A February Associated Press investigation found Russian “officials have deported Ukrainian children to Russia or Russian-held territories without consent, lied to them that they weren’t wanted by their parents, used them for propaganda, and given them Russian families and citizenship.”
Russia’s own laws prohibit children from being adopted to countries where consent wasn’t granted, though Putin’s siege on Ukraine indicates he doesn’t recognize his neighbor’s sovereignty.
It’s highly unlikely Putin will surrender himself or Lvova-Belova to the ICC.
“As a judicial institution, the ICC does not have its own police force or enforcement body; thus, it relies on cooperation with countries worldwide for support, particularly for making arrests, transferring arrested persons to the ICC detention centre in The Hague, freezing suspects’ assets, and enforcing sentences,” the ICC says on its website.
With News Wire Services