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Lula: Brazil's judiciary to decide on Putin's arrest at G20 summit

by Martin Fornusek September 11, 2023 2:43 PM 3 min read
Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva speaking at a press conference during his visit to Spain on April 26, 2023. (Photo: Jesus Hellin/Europa Press via Getty Images)
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Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva said his country's judiciary would decide whether to arrest Russian President Vladimir Putin in the event he attends the Group of 20 (G20) 2024 summit in Brazil, Reuters reported on Sept. 11.

Lula earlier said that the Russian president would not be detained if he attended the G20 meeting in Rio de Janeiro next year.  

In March, the ICC issued a warrant for the arrest of Putin and Russian official Maria Lvova-Belova for organizing the forced deportation of Ukrainian children to the Russian Federation.

Brazil is a party to the ICC's Rome Statute and is therefore obliged to detain the Kremlin leader.

Putin has largely avoided traveling abroad since The Hague court called for his arrest. He did not attend the August summit of BRICS countries in South Africa in person, as the country is party to the ICC treaty.

Putin has also decided to skip the last G20 summit that took place in New Delhi on Sept. 9-10, even though India is not a party to the ICC. In both instances, Russia was represented by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov instead.

Bloomberg reported that the Kremlin's chief however plans to visit China to attend the Belt and Road Forum in October, as it is one of the few countries where he feels confident that the Russian security services can guarantee his safety.

South African President: Putin not to attend BRICS summit
Russian dictator Vladimir Putin will not attend the upcoming BRICS summit and Russia will be represented by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, South Africa’s presidential office informed on July 19.

According to Reuters, Lula also said that Brazil's accession to the Rome Statute should be reviewed.

"I want to know why the U.S., India, and China didn't sign the ICC treaty and why our country signed it," Lula told reporters during the G20 summit in New Delhi.

Unlike India or China, the U.S. signed the treaty but has never ratified it and later withdrew its signature.

The Brazilian president has taken a neutral stance on the Russian invasion of Ukraine, acknowledging Kyiv's right to defend itself but refusing to join sanctions against Russia or send military aid to Ukraine.

Instead, Lula has sought to mediate a diplomatic solution to the war, even criticizing Western support for Ukraine as a way of prolonging the hostilities.

The president sparked outrage on April 6 after suggesting that Ukraine should be open to the idea of giving up Crimea in exchange for peace with Russia.

After visit to China, Lula says US should stop ‘encouraging war’ and ‘start talking about peace’
After meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping on April 15, Brazil’s President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva told reporters that the U.S. should stop “encouraging war” in Ukraine and “start talking about peace,” the Guardian reported.
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