Putin's Appearance At BRICS Summit In South Africa At Risk As Arrest Warrant Is In Place By ICC

  • by:
  • Source: Wayne Dupree
  • 04/12/2023
A spokeswoman for South African President Cyril Ramaphosa said on Wednesday that the upcoming BRICS conference in South Africa in August has been "spanned" by the International Criminal Court's (ICC) order for the arrest of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

South Africa is required by the 2002 Rome Statute to carry out the arrest warrant issued by the ICC for Putin. The presidents of the five greatest rising economies in the world—Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa—are expected to meet at this year's BRICS conference, which is also being hosted by the nation.

"Attending the summit would be expected of all heads of state. However, this ICC warrant has thrown a wrench in the plans, according to Ramaphosa's spokesperson, Vincent Magwenya.

There must now be more conversations regarding how that is going to be managed, and those engagements are currently under way, said Magwenya. The necessary announcements will be made after they are over.

Since the warrant's issuance, Ramaphosa's administration has been aware of its conundrum; Magwenya last month refused to say whether Pretoria will implement the warrant. Tuesday saw Ramaphosa make the announcement that he will send an envoy to Washington to explain his "non-aligned" stance on the situation in the Ukraine.

Since the Soviet Union supported the anti-apartheid African National Congress, which is currently led by Ramaphosa, South Africa and Russia have been strong allies. While the country's military participated in joint exercises with Russian and Chinese forces earlier this year, South Africa has refused to denounce Russia's military intervention in Ukraine or impose sanctions on Moscow under his leadership.

In 2017, the ICC reprimanded Pretoria for failing to detain former Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir when he came to the nation in 2015 for an African leaders' meeting. Pretoria has its own problems with the ICC. South African authorities requested to leave the court after the event, but that order was later overturned after the High Court ruled that it was illegal. 

The court charged Putin and Maria Lvova-Belova, the commissioner for children's rights in Russia, with "illegally deporting" children from "occupied areas of Ukraine." The allegations concern Russia's efforts to evacuate residents from areas that the Ukrainian military had been shelling, mostly in Donbass, a region with a large Russian-speaking population.

The warrant has been rejected by Russia, which like the US, China, and India does not recognize the court's jurisdiction. Russia has deemed the warrant to be "null and void from a legal standpoint."

Get latest news delivered daily!

We will send you breaking news right to your inbox

© 2024 Wayne Dupree, Privacy Policy