China and Russia have each expressed concern over the ICC’s arrest warrant for President Vladimir Putin. Meanwhile, the EU is finalizing a deal to supply Ukraine with €2 billion worth of ammunition. DW has the latest.
China has called on the International Criminal Court (ICC) to avoid “politicization and double standards” after after the tribunal issued an arrest warrant for Russian President Vladimir Putin on war crimes charges.
During a media briefing on Monday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin also called on the ICC to “uphold an objective and impartial stance” and “respect the immunity of heads of state from jurisdiction under international law.”
China is not a signatory to the Rome Statute, the United Nations treaty which governs the court.
Russia and the United States are among a handful of countries that initially signed the Rome Statute, only to later declare they would not ratify the treaty.
Former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev also criticized Putin’s arrest warrant on Monday.
“They decided to try a president of… a nuclear power that does not participate in the ICC on the same grounds as the United States and other countries,” Medvedev wrote on Telegram.
“The consequences for international law will be monstrous.”
Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said the arrest warrant was one of a number of “hostile displays” against Putin.
“We note them, but if we took every one to heart, nothing good would come of it. Therefore we look at this calmly, note everything attentively and continue to work,” he told reporters on Monday.
Justice ministers from around the world are set to convene in London on Monday to discuss ways to scale up support for the ICC’s arrest warrant for Putin.
Russia opens probe into ICC
Russia’s Investigative Committee said on Monday that it had opened its own criminal investigation into ICC prosecutor Karim Khan, who issued an arrest warrant for Vladimir Putin.
The investigation also extends to several ICC judges who were involved in the arrest warrant.
The Investigative Committee claimed the decision to seek Putin’s arrest was “unlawful” because heads of state enjoy absolute immunity from the jurisdiction of foreign states.
It said Khan’s actions may have breached two Russian laws relating to accusing an innocent person of a crime, and “preparing an attack on a representative of a foreign state enjoying international protection, in order to complicate international relations.”
EU set to deliver ammunition to Ukraine
Defense ministers from the European Union signed off on a plan to supply €2 billion ($2.1 billion) worth of ammunition to Ukraine on Monday.
Under the plan, €1 billion will be used to reimburse EU members that immediately supply Ukraine with ammunition from their own existing stockpiles.
Another €1 will be used to jointly fast track orders of ammunition specifically for Ukraine.
The EU aims to deliver 1 million 155-millimeter artillery shells to Ukraine this year.
Ukraine and UK ink trade deal
The United Kingdom signed a new trade deal with Ukraine on Monday designed to help with the reconstruction effort after the war.
The deal will allow Ukrainian businesses to trade with the UK using electronic transactions, e-signatures and e-contracts.
“The historic digital trade deal signed today paves the way for a new era of modern trade between our two countries,” British Trade Secretary Kemi Badenoch said.
The UK will also extend its arrangement to cut all tariffs on goods imported from Ukraine until March, 2024.
Xi meets with Putin in Moscow
Chinese President Xi Jinping arrived in the Russian capital on Monday to meet with an increasingly isolated Putin.
The two leaders are expected to discuss Beijing’s proposal for a cease-fire, while the Kremlin also said Putin would provide “clarifications” on Russia’s point of view.
Xi and Putin were scheduled to have an “informal” one-on-one meeting and dinner on Monday before formal negotiations on Tuesday.
Xi described his three-day trip as a “journey of friendship, cooperation and peace.” Analysts say China is attempting to present itself as a neutral mediator in the conflict.
In the lead-up to the meeting, Putin praised China’s “balanced” stance on the conflict in an article he wrote for a Chinese newspaper.
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Source: Deutsche Welle