Today, on March 17th, 2023, Pre-Trial Chamber II of the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued arrest warrants for russian president vladimir putin and maria lvova-belova, who is the russian presidential commissioner for children’s affairs, according to an ICC press release.
Putin and lvova-belova are suspected of committing the war crime of illegal deportation and transfer of children from the occupied regions of Ukraine to russia, which has been taking place since at least February 24th, 2022.
There are sufficient reasons to believe that the named citizens are individually criminally responsible for the crimes (Article 25 (3) (a) of the Rome Statute), the press release says.
“On February 22nd, 2023, Pre-Trial Chamber II, based on the requests of the Prosecutor’s Office, concluded that there are sufficient grounds to believe that each suspect is responsible for the war crime of illegal deportation of the population and illegal transfer of the population from the occupied areas of Ukraine to the russian federation, which caused harm to Ukrainian children,” the statement emphasizes.
The arrest warrants were issued on the basis of petitions filed by the prosecutor’s office on February 22nd, 2023.