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Armenian president ratifies ICC Rome Statute

by The Kyiv Independent news desk October 14, 2023 3:04 PM 2 min read
Flag with the logo of the International Criminal Court (ICC) on March 29, 2022, in The Hague, Netherlands. (Photo: Alex Gottschalk/DeFodi Images via Getty Images)
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Armenian President Vahagn Khachaturyan ratified the International Criminal Court's Rome Statute, Armenia's Presidential Office announced on Oct. 13.

On Oct.3, the Armenian parliament voted to ratify the Rome Statute. Now that Khachaturyan has signed the treaty into law, Armenian authorities will be obliged to arrest Russian dictator Vladimir Putin if he sets foot in the country.

Armenia is the 124th country to become a party to the Rome Statute. All International Criminal Court (ICC) members must ratify the treaty to establish the court's jurisdiction.

The ICC issued arrest warrants in mid-March for Putin and Maria Lvova-Belova, the Russian official allegedly overseeing the forced deportations of tens of thousands of Ukrainian children to Russia and Russian-occupied territories.

The ICC asserts that there are "reasonable grounds to believe" that Putin holds direct accountability for supervising the deportations and that he neglected to exert authority over Russian soldiers and civilians executing the crime across occupied Ukrainian regions from the onset of Russia's all-out war against Ukraine.

Armenia first signed the Rome Statute in 1998 but failed to ratify it. The process resumed in 2022.

The treaty's ratification comes in the wake of Azerbaijan's victory over the self-declared ethnic Armenian Nagorno-Karabakh Republic, which was defeated by Azerbaijani forces on Sept. 20.

Russian "peacekeepers" were stationed in the area to stop violence between Armenians and Azerbaijanis, but did nothing to prevent Azerbaijan's Sept. 20 offensive. Tensions between Armenia and their long-time ally Russia have since risen.

Russia’s ‘peacekeeper’ act crumbles as Azerbaijan overwhelms Nagorno-Karabakh
On Sept. 19, just under three years after the end of the last major war between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the mountainous region of Nagorno-Karabakh, Baku moved decisively to finish what it started in 2020. Shortly after the announcement of the launching of “anti-terrorist” measures by the Azerba…

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