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Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov in St. Petersburg, Russia.
Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov walks out after a meeting with African leaders at the Konstantin Palace in Strelna on June 17, 2023, in Saint Petersburg, Russia. (Contributor/Getty Images)
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Moscow claimed it does not recognize the decision of the International Criminal Court (ICC) to issue arrest warrants for two Russian military commanders over the war against Ukraine, Russia's state-controlled agency TASS reported on March 6, citing Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov.

Lieutenant General Sergei Kobylash and Admiral Viktor Sokolov "are each allegedly responsible" for a number of war crimes, including "directing attacks at civilian objects," the ICC said.

Kobylash is suspected due to his role as Commander of the Long-Range Aviation of the Aerospace Force, while Sokolov is suspected due to his position as Commander of the Black Sea Fleet, according to the court, which is based in The Hague.

The Kremlin, as it did after the first arrest warrants against Russian officials were issued almost a year ago, said that Russia does not recognize the jurisdiction of the ICC.

In March 2023, the ICC issued arrest warrants for Russian President Vladimir Putin and Maria Lvova-Belova, the Russian official allegedly overseeing the forced deportations of Ukrainian children to Russia.

Russia withdrew from the ICC in 2016 following the court's criticism of Russia's illegal occupation of Crimea.

In its statement on the issuance of arrest warrants for the two Russian military commanders, the court said that "there are reasonable grounds to believe that the suspects also bear responsibility for the crime against humanity" of "intentionally causing great suffering."

Russia launched 84 missiles and 24 kamikaze drones at Ukraine on Oct. 10, 2022, the first of a long series of devastating attacks targeting the country’s critical infrastructure through the winter.

Commenting on the court's decision, President Volodymyr Zelensky said that "justice for Ukraine, for Ukrainians, and for the international community as a whole will definitely be restored."

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