The Hague International Criminal Court has issued an arrest warrant for the Russian president Vladimir Putin, as per the court’s website.
Russia’s Commissioner for Children's rights Maria Lvova-Belova is also facing an arrest warrant.
“Mr Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin, President of the Russian Federation, is allegedly responsible for the war crime of unlawful deportation of population (children) from occupied areas of Ukraine to the Russian Federation,” reads the Court’s statement.
Maria Lvova-Belova is suspected of a similar crime.
“Decisions of the International Criminal Court are irrelevant for our country from a legal point of view. Russia is not a party to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court and bears no obligations under it. Russia is not cooperating with this body, and [such warrants] for arrest coming from the ICC will be legally null and void for us,” Maria Zakharova, spokeswoman for the Russian Foreign Ministry, wrote.
“Now, if Putin leaves Russia, he would be arrested and surrendered to ICC. World leaders will think twice before shaking his hand or sitting with Putin at the negotiating table. It’s another clear signal to the world that the Russian regime is criminal,” Andriy Kostin, Prosecutor General of Ukraine, wrote on Twitter.