Wednesday, June 12, 2024

South Africa: South African Govt Commits to Arresting Russian Leader Putin if He Comes to South Africa

Cape Town — According to News24, the South African government confirmed that Russian President Vladimir Putin will be arrested, following an arrest warrant issued by the International Criminal Court (ICC), if he visits the country to attend the BRICS Summit in Johannesburg in August.

The decision comes days after, in an affidavit, President Cyril Ramaphosa cautioned that acting on the ICC’s mandate would be considered a declaration of war. “Russia has made it clear that arresting its sitting president would be a declaration of war. It would be against our Constitution to risk engaging in war with Russia,” said President Cyril Ramaphosa.

Additionally, official opposition party the Democratic Alliance (DA) approached the High Court in Pretoria to force the government to commit to arresting Putin. Previously, South Africa’s International Relations and Cooperation Minister Naledi Pandor gazetted a notice providing diplomatic immunity to officials attending the BRICS summit.

The Presidency announced that instead of Putin, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will be in attendance. South Africa, which is a signatory of the Rome Statute, is obliged to arrest Putin, who has been accused of war crimes by the ICC over his nation’s protracted conflict with Ukraine.


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