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Vladimir Putin offered protection from arrest by South Africa

by CKG Editor

The leader of one of South Africa’s opposition parties has vowed to protect Vladimir Putin should he visit their country despite a worldwide arrest warrant issued.

The International Criminal Court (ICC) has accused warmonger Putin of war crimes over his alleged involvement in the abduction of children from Ukraineto Russia.

Every member state of the ICC now has an obligation to the court to arrest and surrender Putin if he turns up in any of their countries.

South Africa is a signatory and Putin is scheduled to travel to South Africa for the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) summit in August.

Opposition minority party, the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), has said Putin is welcome and EFF leader Julius Malema said that no one was going to arrest him in the country where Russia “played a huge role to support the struggle for freedom”.

Malema said that his party would personally protect Putin and “if need be, will go and fetch Putin from the airport to his meetings”.

Ukraine’s presidential advisor for children’s rights, Daria Herasymchuk, last month reported that almost 14,000 Ukrainian children have been abducted.

Prosecutors at the ICC said they would formally open two war crimes cases and issue arrest warrants for several Russians deemed responsible for the mass abduction of Ukrainian children and the targeting of Ukrainian civilian infrastructure, including Putin.

“Putin is welcomed here. No one is going to arrest Putin. He [Putin] will address, finish all his meetings, and we will take him back to the airport,” Mr Malema said.

He continued: “We know our friends. We know the people who liberated us. We know the people who supported us.”

A spokesperson for President Cyril Ramaphosa has refused to confirm whether South Africa would arrest Putin.

But Malema has said there is no chance Putin will be arrested.

“President Putin is welcome,” he added. “We know our friends. We know the people who liberated us. We know the people who supported us.”

Last month, the South African navy held joint exercises with Russian forces off the coast of South Africa. It has also abstained during UN votes condemning Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

In what seems like a worrying precedent, the South African government let the then-Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir leave the country in 2015 despite an ICC arrest warrant.

Source – Mirror

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