UK blocks address by Russian children’s rights ombudsman, a wanted war-crimes suspect, to UN Security Council
Maria Lvova-Belova (Photo:Sputnik/Mikhail Metzel/Pool via REUTERS)
The United Kingdom has stopped a Russian war-crimes suspect from giving a video address at an informal meeting of the UN Security Council, the UK mission to the UN reported on April 5 on Twitter.
Russia had requested that Russian children’s rights ombudsman Maria Lvova-Belova address the council on the topic of the abduction of children by Russia from Ukrainian territory.
That was despite Lvova-Belova now being wanted as a war-crimes suspect by the International Criminal Court for this very reason – the court on March 17 issued a warrant for her arrest in connection with the illegal deportation of children from Ukraine.
The court issued an arrest warrant on the same day for Russian dictator Vladimir Putin, who is also suspected of being responsible for the abduction of Ukrainian children.
A spokesperson for the UK’s mission to the UN in New York was quoted as saying that “if Maria Lvova-Belova wants to give an account of her actions, she can do so in The Hague.”
The Hague in the Netherlands is where the International Criminal Court is located.
The warrants issued against Lvova-Belova and Putin means that they could now be arrested on the territory of the 124 countries that have ratified the Rome Statute – the court’s foundational charter.
The UK’s stand against the proposal that a war-crimes suspect be allowed to address the Security Council came days after Russia took over the presidency of the council for a month.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy earlier said that allowing Russia to take over the presidency of the council demonstrated “the complete bankruptcy of international institutions.”
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