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Official: Armenia not to arrest Putin under ICC warrant as it ‘heard Russia’a concerns’

by The Kyiv Independent news desk April 2, 2023 2:10 PM 1 min read
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Hakob Arshakyan, the Vice President of the Armenian National Assembly, said that the ruling party, Civil Contract, has no intention to arrest Russian dictator Vladimir Putin based on an International Criminal Court (ICC) warrant.

Armenia's Constitutional Court ruled on March 24 that the ICC's obligations align with its constitution. The Court's ruling means there would be a legal obligation to arrest Russian dictator Vladimir Putin and his Commissioner for Children's Rights Maria Lvova-Belova should they step foot on Armenian territory.

“We have heard the concerns expressed by Russia, and I think we can ensure that the continuation of the Rome Statute process does not harm the strategic relationship between Armenia and Russia,” Arshakyan said in an interview with Armenpress, a news agency.

On March 30, Gagik Melkonyan, a parliament member of Armenia’s ruling party, said if Putin were to travel to Armenia, “he should be arrested.”

However, “the ruling party has no such intention or desire (to arrest Putin),” Arshakyan said.

On March 17, the ICC issued arrest warrants for Putin and Lvova-Belova, the Russian official allegedly overseeing the forced deportations of over 16,000 Ukrainian children to Russia.

Armenia has economic, military, and political connections with Russia. It hosts a Russian military base in the town of Gyumri.

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