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ICC Issues Arrest Warrant For Putin – Will It Affect Ukraine-Russia War?


A recently issued arrest warrant seems to have made little difference to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s routine or the ongoing war with Ukraine. The embattled politician traveled to Crimea on Saturday to celebrate the ninth anniversary of the annexation of the other country’s Black Sea peninsula. The development came even as Kiev’s Western allies welcomed the largely symbolic arrest warrant and Moscow insisted the court has “no meaning” in Russia.

However, the order could have the unfortunate effect of prolonging the war between Ukraine and Russia. Experts believe this will further strain diplomatic relations and keep Putin (and Russia) away from the negotiating table.

“The arrest warrant risks obstructing any exit that Putin could use to end the war… Anything that further isolates his position carries a risk – it risks him doubling down and focusing his resolve to continue this conflict.” military analyst Sean Bell told Sky News. .

Read also: ICC issues arrest warrant for Vladimir Putin – What are the charges?

Putin faces war crimes charges, with the court specifically linking him to the alleged kidnapping of children from Ukraine during Russia’s full-scale invasion of the neighboring country. All 123 member states are now obliged to arrest Putin and bring him to The Hague for trial if he sets foot on their territory. But the ICC has no police force of its own and will be completely dependent on member states to even begin the trial against Putin.

As Russia continues to defend its “invasion” of Ukraine, the possibility of criminal prosecution is closing in on Putin. The order also serves to send a message to senior Russian officials that they may be vulnerable to prosecution or face additional travel restrictions in the coming days.

Joanna Swanson

Joanna Swanson is Europe correspondent at the Thomson Reuters Foundation based in Brussels covering politics, culture, business, climate change, society, economies and inclusive tech. With specific focus in breaking news, she has covered some of the world's most significant stories.