Putin to skip upcoming BRICS summit given the arrest threat in South Africa
21 July, 2023 | Bhavnish Tawar
Putin's absence from BRICS summit is linked to an arrest warrant issued by the International Criminal Court in March of this year which connects Putin to alleged war crime.
It has been announced that Russian President Vladimir Putin will not be physically attending the upcoming BRICS summit in South Africa, while other leaders will be present in person. Instead, Putin will participate virtually, with Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov representing Russia at the event.
The decision was made by mutual agreement, as stated by the South African President’s spokesperson in a recent statement. This move is seen as a setback for Putin, who has been promoting his relationships with BRICS countries as evidence of failed attempts by the US and Europe to isolate him due to the war in Ukraine.
BRICS member South Africa obligated to arrest Putin over warrant issued by International Criminal Court
The reason for Putin’s absence from the summit is linked to an arrest warrant issued by the International Criminal Court in March of this year. The warrant connects Putin to the war crime of deporting Ukrainian children, which could potentially lead to his arrest if he leaves Russia.
Africa is a signatory to the Rome Statute that established the ICC and is bound by its decisions, which may have contributed to Putin’s decision to attend virtually. Additionally, South Africa’s main opposition party has requested the government to arrest Putin if he attended the BRICS summit, further complicating matters.
South African President’s spokesperson, Vincent Magwenya, stated that the decision for Putin not to participate in the summit was made after extensive consultations until last night.