What does the ICC arrest warrant imply for Putin? By Reuters

© Reuters. Russian President Vladimir Putin, accompanied by Governor of Sevastopol Mikhail Razvozhayev, visits a kids’s arts and aesthetic centre in Sevastopol, Crimea March 18, 2023. Sputnik/Russian Presidential Press Workplace/Kremlin through REUTERS

By Anthony Deutsch and Stephanie van den Berg

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – Vladimir Putin might not see the within of a cell in The Hague any time quickly, however his warfare crimes arrest warrant may damage his potential to journey freely and meet different world leaders, who might really feel much less inclined to talk to a needed man.

Putin is simply the third head of state to be indicted by the Worldwide Felony Courtroom whereas nonetheless in energy. Following is a take a look at what the results may very well be for the Kremlin chief.


The ICC accuses Putin of duty for the warfare crime of deporting Ukrainian kids – a minimum of a whole bunch, probably extra – to Russia.

The Kremlin was fast to dismiss the allegations and the Russian international minister stated ICC choices “don’t have any that means for our nation, together with from a authorized viewpoint.”


The ICC’s 123 member states are obliged to detain and switch Putin if he units foot on their territory. Russia just isn’t a member and neither are China, the USA or India, which is internet hosting a summit later this 12 months of leaders of the G20 group of massive economies, which incorporates Russia.

The world’s everlasting warfare crimes court docket was created by the Rome Statute, a treaty ratified by all of the EU states, in addition to Australia, Brazil, Britain, Canada, Japan, Mexico, Switzerland, 33 African nations and 19 nations within the South Pacific.

Russia signed the Rome Statute in 2000, however withdrew its backing in 2016, after the ICC labeled Moscow’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea Peninsula as an armed battle.

“Putin just isn’t silly. He isn’t going to journey overseas to a rustic the place he may be arrested,” stated assistant professor of historical past on the Utrecht College Iva Vukusic.

“He’s not going to have the ability to journey just about anyplace else past the nations which might be both clearly allies or a minimum of considerably aligned (with) Russia,” Vukusic stated.


Sudan’s former president Omar al-Bashir and Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi are the one different leaders to have been indicted by the ICC whereas serving as head of state. Expenses in opposition to Gaddafi had been terminated after he was overthrown and killed in 2011.

Bashir, indicted in 2009 for genocide in Darfur, remained in workplace for one more decade till being toppled in a coup. He has since been prosecuted in Sudan for different crimes however has not been handed to the ICC.

Whereas in workplace, he travelled to quite a few Arab and African nations, together with ICC member states Chad, Djibouti, Jordan, Kenya, Malawi, South Africa, and Uganda, which declined to detain him. The court docket rebuked these nations or referred them to the U.N. Safety Council for non-compliance.

The ICC has tried one former head of state after he left workplace: former Ivorian President Laurent Gbagbo, who was acquitted of all expenses in 2019 after a three-year trial.

Kenya’s President William Ruto and his predecessor Uhuru Kenyatta had been each charged by the ICC earlier than they had been elected. The costs in opposition to each males have since been dropped. Kenyatta is the one chief to have appeared earlier than the ICC whereas nonetheless serving in workplace.


Other than the ICC, a number of former leaders have been tried by different worldwide courts. Amongst notable instances:

Slobodan Milosevic, former president of Serbia and Yugoslavia, turned the primary former head of state to seem earlier than a global tribunal since World Struggle Two when he was tried at a U.N. court docket for alleged crimes in the course of the Nineties Balkan wars. He died in custody in 2006 earlier than a verdict was reached.

Liberian former chief Charles Taylor was discovered responsible of warfare crimes in 2012 by the U.N.-backed Particular Courtroom for Sierra Leone in The Hague, the primary former head of state to be convicted of warfare crimes by a global court docket for the reason that Nuremberg trials of Nazi leaders after World Struggle Two.

Former Kosovo President Hashim Thaci, one in all Milosevic’s adversaries within the Nineties Balkan wars, left workplace after being indicted for warfare crimes by the Kosovo warfare crimes tribunal in The Hague. He is because of go on trial subsequent month.

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