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The ICC ordered the arrest of Russia’s defense minister and chief of staff

The ICC ordered the arrest of Russia’s defense minister and chief of staff

FILE PHOTO: Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu during a meeting of the Defense Ministry Board at the National Security Control Center in Moscow, Russia on December 19, 2023. via Sputnik/Mikhail Klimentyev/Kremlin REUTERS/ File photo.

The International Criminal Court (CBI) Russia announced arrest warrants for former Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu on Tuesday And Chief of General Staff, Valery GerasimovFor war crimes and crimes against humanity between October 2022 and March 2023 during the invasion of Ukraine.

ICC Pre-Trial Chamber It also approved arrest warrants for two senior Russian government officials responsible for war crimes “for directing attacks on civilian targets and causing excessive damage to civilians and civilian property.”as well as A crime against humanity for “inhumane acts” as defined in the Rome Statute.

ICC lawyer Karim Khan It asked the court to approve the arrest warrants, which alleged that Shoigu and Gerasimov were deemed “criminally responsible” for committing these crimes, ordered their commission and/or did not exercise sufficient control over the forces under his command to prevent the commission. In these crimes.

“There are reasonable grounds to believe that both suspects are responsible for missile attacks by Russian armed forces against Ukrainian power infrastructure from at least October 10, 2022 to at least March 9, 2023,” the three judges pointed out. This creates a room of preliminary things.

During that period, the Russian Armed Forces carried out “numerous attacks against a number of power plants and substations in various locations” in Ukraine.

The Chamber found “reasonable grounds” to believe that “the alleged attacks were directed against civilian objects, and if the facilities qualified as military objectives at the relevant time, the anticipated collateral damage to civilians and civilian objects would clearly have been excessive compared to the expected military benefit.”

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It further condemned that “the alleged campaign of attacks constitutes a course of conduct involving multiple commissions of action against a citizenry, carried out in accordance with state policy”. or serious injury to body or mental or physical health, thereby criminally liable for a crime against humanity.”

Although the contents of the warrants were released “confidentially” to protect witnesses and ongoing investigations, the chamber authorized the public release of the existence of these arrest warrants, the names of the suspects and the suspects’ crimes. Alleging that.

These are not the first arrest warrants issued by the ICC in connection with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine since February 2022. Last March, the arrest of Lieutenant General of the Russian Armed Forces, Sergei Kobylash, was ordered. and Russian Navy Admiral Viktor Sokolov.

A year ago, the ICC ordered the arrest of Russian President Vladimir Putin and Russian politician Maria Lvova-Belova, Russia’s commissioner for children’s rights, for illegally deporting Ukrainian minors as a war crime under the Rome Statute.