ICC issues arrest warrants for Russian military commander and former defense minister | Russia-Ukraine war news

The court charged them with war crimes and crimes against humanity for orchestrating attacks against Ukrainian civilian targets.

The International Criminal Court (ICC) has issued arrest warrants for Russia’s former defense minister and military commander for attacks on Ukrainian civilians.

The warrants were issued because judges found there were sufficient grounds to believe the men were involved in “missile attacks by Russian forces against Ukrainian power infrastructure” between Oct. 10, 2022 and at least March 9, 2023, the Hague-based court said in a statement on Tuesday.

The International Criminal Court has charged former Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and General Valery Gerasimov with war crimes and crimes against humanity for inhumane acts.

“During this period, Russian forces carried out large-scale attacks on numerous power plants and substations in several locations in Ukraine,” the court statement said.

The judges added that they found there was “substantial reason to believe that the attack was directed at a civilian object.”

“For facilities that may have been considered military objectives at the time, the anticipated collateral civilian harm and damage would clearly have outweighed the anticipated military benefit,” the report added.

Russia has repeatedly said Ukraine’s energy infrastructure is a legitimate military target and denies it is targeting civilians or civilian infrastructure.

Putin’s Warrant

Last year, the same court also issued an arrest warrant for Russian President Vladimir Putin, charging him personally with abducting children from Ukraine.

In March, the same court issued arrest warrants for two senior Russian military officials on charges related to attacks on Ukrainian civilian infrastructure, which the judges said were carried out “in accordance with state policy.”

NDMT’s Step Wassen, reporting from Amsterdam, said the court’s announcement was unexpected as there had been no previous indication that the arrest warrant in question had been sought.

“This is what they [the two Russian officials] “Anyone travelling to countries that have signed the Rome Charter must be arrested and taken to The Hague,” she said, adding that authorities would avoid countries that are parties to the treaty.

Russia is not a member state of the court, does not recognise its jurisdiction and refuses to extradite the suspects.

In a cabinet reshuffle in May at the start of his fifth term as president, Putin replaced Shoigu as defense minister and appointed him secretary of Russia’s Security Council.

The Security Council said on Tuesday that the ICC warrant for Shoigu’s arrest was part of a hybrid war against Moscow, state news agency TASS reported.

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