Brazil needs to review accession to ICC, own judiciary to decide on Putin: Lula

By Nidhi Verma

(Reuters) -Brazil’s president said on Monday there was a need to review the country’s accession to the International Criminal Court when nations like the U.S., China and India had not done so.

It would be up to Brazil’s judiciary to decide whether Russian President Vladimir Putin would be arrested if he attends next year’s G20 summit in the South American country, President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva told reporters in New Delhi. Lula attended this year’s summit in the Indian capital, which was held over the weekend.

The International Criminal Court issued an arrest warrant for Putin in March, accusing him of the war crime of illegally deporting hundreds of children from Ukraine. Russia has denied its forces have engaged in war crimes, or forcibly taken Ukrainian children.

Brazil is a signatory to the Rome Statute which led to the founding of the ICC.

“I want to know why the U.S, India and China didn’t sign the ICC treaty and why our country signed it,” Lula said.

Putin has skipped the last two G20 summits in Bali and New Delhi, and Russia has been represented by its foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov.

“If Putin decides to join (next year’s summit), it is the judiciary’s power to decide (on a possible arrest) and not my government,” Lula said.

On Saturday, he had said in an interview with news show First Post that there was “no way” Putin would be arrested if he attended the summit in Rio de Janeiro.

(Reporting by Nidhi Verma; writing by Shilpa Jamkhandikar; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman and Raju Gopalakrishnan)

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