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International Court Issues War Crimes Warrant For Putin



putin charged with war crimes

THE HAGUE War Crime — Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia, is accused of personally being responsible for kidnapping children from Ukraine by the International Criminal Court, which announced on Friday that it had issued an arrest warrant for him for war crimes.

That was the first time the ICC had issued a warrant against the head of one of the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council, even though world leaders have previously been indicted.

Putin “is allegedly responsible for the war crime of (children’s) unlawful deportation from (occupied) territories of Ukraine to the Russian Federation,” according to a statement from the court.

It also issued a warrant for Maria Alekseyevna Lvova-arrest Belova on related charges on Friday. Maria is the commissioner for children’s rights in the Russian Federation’s Office of the President.

Moscow instantly discounted the action, while Ukraine hailed it as a significant advance. Yet, at least initially, its application in the real world will likely be limited.

But he’ll carry the stigma of moral failure with him for the rest of his life.

“Vladimir Putin will always be regarded as an outcast around the world. He no longer has any political standing anywhere in the world. According to former international prosecutor David Crane, who spoke to The Associated Press, every foreign leader who supports him will also be embarrassed.

Piotr Hofmanski, the court’s president, said in a video statement that although the ICC’s judges issued the warrants, it would be up to the rest of the world to ensure they were carried out. The court needs a private police force to do this.


responsible for the war crime of (children’s) unlawful deportation from (occupied) territories of Ukraine

“The judges issued arrest warrants. International cooperation is necessary for the execution, he said.

The court can inflict a maximum sentence of life imprisonment “where justified by the extraordinary gravity of the offense and the unique circumstances of the convicted person,” according to its founding treaty known as the Rome Statute.

Yet, the likelihood of Russians being tried at the ICC remains incredibly remote because Moscow continues to reject the court’s jurisdiction.

Dmitry Peskov, a spokesman for the Kremlin, maintained that Russia rejects the ICC and views its rulings as “legally void.” Russia views the court’s action as “outrageous and reprehensible,” he continued.

When questioned whether Putin would avoid traveling to nations where he might be detained under the ICC’s arrest warrant, Peskov declined to respond.

According to Dmytro Lubinets, the director of human rights in Ukraine, 16,226 children were sent abroad, according to information from the National Information Bureau. Ukraine has succeeded in bringing 308 kids home.

Lvova-Belova responded with dripping sarcasm. She was also named in the warrant. It’s wonderful that the international community has recognized our efforts to assist the children in our nation, take them out of danger zones, provide for their needs, and surround them with kind, compassionate people.


Mykhailo Podolyak, a presidential adviser, declared that “the world shifted”.

Officials in Ukraine were thrilled with the decision.

Mykhailo Podolyak, a presidential adviser, declared that “the world shifted”. The “wheels of justice are spinning,” according to foreign minister Dmytro Kuleba, who also claimed that “international criminals will be held accountable for taking children and other international crimes.”

The news of the arrest warrant was welcomed by Olga Lopatkina, a Ukrainian woman who fought for months to get her foster children back after they were sent to a facility run by Russian supporters. “Excellent news!” she said in an exchange of messages with The Associated Press. “Everyone should be held accountable for their misdeeds,”

Even while Ukraine is not a member of the ICC, it has granted it jurisdiction over its territory, and since beginning an investigation a year ago, ICC prosecutor Karim Khan has visited Ukraine four times.

The 123-member international court does not include the United States, China, Russia and Ukraine.

“Reasonable grounds to believe that each suspect bears responsibility for the war crime of unlawful population deportation and unlawful population transfer from occupied areas of Ukraine to the Russian Federation, in prejudice of Ukrainian children,” the International Criminal Court (ICC) stated in a statement following the findings of its pre-trial chamber.

For having committed the acts “directly, jointly with others and through others” and for failing to “exercise control properly over civilian and military subordinates who committed the acts,” the court statement stated that “there are reasonable grounds to believe that Mr. Putin bears individual criminal responsibility” for the kidnappings.

ICC prosecutor Khan reported seeing a children’s home in southern Ukraine 2 kilometers (just over a mile) from the fighting lines on his most recent visit earlier this month.


ICC action would have a significant impact, while Russia denounced the court’s accusations

The drawings nailed to the wall “spoke to a context of love and support that was there once,” he added in a statement. The reported repatriation of children from Ukraine to the Russian Federation or their illegal transfer to other areas of the temporarily controlled regions left this home vacant.

“As I stated to the U.N. Security Council in September, my office prioritizes investigating these alleged activities. Children cannot be considered war’s loot, according to Khan.

Others asserted that the ICC action would have a significant impact, while Russia denounced the court’s accusations and warrants as false and without merit.

Balkees Jarrah, associate director of international justice at Human Rights Watch, stated, “The ICC has labeled Putin a wanted man and taken its first move to end the impunity that has empowered criminals in Russia’s war on Ukraine for far too long. “The warrants send a strong message that providing the go-ahead for major crimes against civilians or tolerating such crimes may result in a prison cell in The Hague.”

Crane, who 20 years ago indicted the president of Liberia, Charles Taylor, for atrocities committed in Sierra Leone, warned tyrants and dictators around the world that “those who perpetrate international crimes will be held accountable, including heads of state.”

After being arrested, Taylor was later tried in the Netherlands before a special court. He was found guilty and given a 50-year prison term.

“This is an important day for justice and for the people of Ukraine,” Crane wrote in a statement to the A.P.

On Thursday, a U.N.-backed investigation listed possible incidents that amount to war crimes and maybe crimes against humanity, including Russian strikes against people in Ukraine, systematic torture, and murders in the seized territory.

A “filtration” system designed to single out Ukrainians for detention, torture, and inhumane conditions was also discovered in the extensive investigation into crimes against Ukrainians committed on Russian soil. Deported Ukrainian children who were prevented from rejoining their families were also discovered.

But, the ICC gave Putin a face on Friday, ending the accusations of kidnapping.



2023: Decorated Australian War Veteran Unlawfully Killed Prisoners In Afghanistan




Melbourne — Australian Ben Roberts-Smith, the recipient of the Victoria Cross, claimed that the media falsely accused him, but a judge concluded on Thursday that he unlawfully killed captives and committed other war crimes in Afghanistan.

Roberts-Smith, a former Special Air Service Regiment corporal who is currently a media firm executive, is accused of committing a series of war crimes, according to publications published in 2018. Federal Court Justice Anthony Besanko determined that these articles were essentially factual.

Besanko concluded that Roberts-Smith, who received the Medal of Gallantry for his contributions during the Afghanistan War, had “broken the moral and legal rules of military engagement” and had dishonored Australia with his actions.

The decision, which came after a contentious trial that lasted 110 court hearing days and is estimated to have cost more than 25 million Australian dollars ($16 million) in legal bills, is viewed as a landmark victory for press freedom against Australia’s draconian defamation rules.

A machine gun was allegedly used by Roberts-Smith, a judge’s son, to shoot a detainee wearing a prosthetic leg in the rear in 2009 in a Taliban base in the province of Uruzgan known as Whisky 108. He retained the man’s prosthetic to use as a fun beer mug.

The man was one of two unarmed Afghans taken from a tunnel by Roberts-Smith’s patrol. To “blood the rookie,” Roberts-Smith forced a “newly deployed and inexperienced” soldier to murder the second, more seasoned warrior.


The decision came after a contentious trial that lasted 110 court hearing days and is estimated to have cost more than 25 million Australian dollars ($16 million) in legal bills.

In addition, it was established that in the Afghan hamlet of Darwan in 2012, Roberts-Smith kicked an unarmed, handcuffed farmer named Ali Jan off a cliff and into a riverbed before killing him. Then Roberts-Smith ordered one of his soldiers to shoot Jan to death.

Allegations that Roberts-Smith, who is 2.02 meters (6 feet, 7 inches) tall, intimidated soldiers and abused Afghan villagers were also proven genuine.

The judge determined that two of the six unlawful killings Roberts-Smith was alleged to have participated in were not proven by the civil court standard of the balance of probabilities.

Additionally, it was determined that the allegations of domestic violence against Roberts-Smith were false and defamatory. The judge concluded that the unfounded charges would not further harm the veteran’s reputation.

Such claims of war crimes would have required proof beyond a reasonable doubt if they had been made in a criminal court.

The 44-year-old Roberts-Smith has denied any misconduct. His attorneys attributed his termination to “corrosive jealousy” on the part of “bitter people” within the SAS who had waged a “poisonous campaign against him.”

Because of their stories, the Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, and The Canberra Times were accused of defaming each other in the civil lawsuit.

One of the journalists, Nick McKenzie, who wrote the divisive articles, commended the SAS veterans who had testified against the national hero.

The day of justice is today. It’s a day of justice for those courageous SAS members who came out and exposed Ben Roberts-Smith for the war criminal, bully, and liar that he is, McKenzie told reporters outside court.


The Australian Federal Police is investigating Roberts-Smith and other Australian military members for possible war crimes in Afghanistan.

“Those SAS members are a proud representation of Australia. The bulk of the SAS stood up for what was right, and their actions were rewarded, said McKenzie.

Arthur Moses, the attorney for Roberts-Smith, requested an additional 42 days to contemplate filing an appeal with the Federal Court’s Full Bench.

Billionaire Kerry Stokes, executive chair of Seven West Media, where Roberts-Smith works, has agreed to pay the case’s legal expenses.

Stokes’s statement in support of Roberts-Smith was, “The judgment does not accord with the man I know.”

Ben has always maintained his innocence, so I know this will be difficult for him, Stokes said.

Roberts-Smith had been there each day of his trial but did not show up in Sydney for the verdict. On Wednesday, media outlets published a picture of him relaxing by a pool in Bali, an Indonesian tourist destination.

The Australian Federal Police is investigating Roberts-Smith and other Australian military members for possible war crimes in Afghanistan.

The first criminal accusation about an alleged illegal killing in Afghanistan was brought in March. Oliver Schulz, a former SAS trooper, was accused of committing a war crime by killing an Afghan in a wheat field in Uruzgan province in 2012.


The Australian Federal Police is investigating Roberts-Smith and other Australian military members for possible war crimes in Afghanistan.

The decision was a “very disappointing day” for the elite unit, according to Martin Hamilton-Smith, chair of the Australian Special Air Service Association. He said that charges against more veterans should be brought immediately if they were tried for war crimes.

According to Hamilton-Smith, the only way to learn the real truth about this is to bring it before a criminal court, where both sides of the story may be presented, and the facts can be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

When Roberts-Smith received the Victoria Cross in 2011, Australia’s highest honor for valor in the face of an enemy, he was elevated to a national hero. As a famous Australian, he had multiple meetings with Queen Elizabeth II.

He received the medal 2010 for taking out a machine gun nest at Tizak, Kandahar, during combat. Two machine gunners and an enemy preparing to throw a rocket grenade were killed thanks to Roberts-Smith. No allegations of war crimes related to that conflict.


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UN Appeals Court Increases Sentences For 2 Serbs Convicted Of Crimes In Balkan War




Netherlands’ THE HAGUE —Balkan War,  On Wednesday, U.N. appeals judges significantly increased the convictions of two Slobodan Milosevic allies, holding them accountable for involvement in crimes in Bosnia and one town in Croatia as part of a coordinated criminal scheme to expel non-Serbs from the areas during the Balkan wars.

Jovica Stanisic and Franko Simatovic’s acquittals of involvement in the criminal scheme were overturned by the appeals chamber at the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals, and their sentences were increased from 12 to 15 years.


According to Presiding Judge Graciela Gatti Santana, the two men, who are both now in their 70s, “shared the intent to further the common criminal purpose to forcibly and permanently remove the majority of non-Serbs from large areas of Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina through the commission of the crimes charged in the indictment.”

The longest-running war crimes investigation, which dates back to the early 1990s Balkan wars, is concluded by the appeals court decision.

Despite being imprisoned for his alleged role in inciting the violent conflicts that broke out as Yugoslavia fell apart, Milosevic passed away in his cell in 2006 before the case could be concluded.

Serge Brammertz, the chief prosecutor for the mechanism, applauded the decision, calling it “really important.”

“This is the only decision we have with officials from Belgrade convicted as a part of the joint criminal enterprise,” he said.

Simatovic viewed the proceedings via video link from a U.N. prison facility while Stanisic attended the session in person.


The longest-running war crimes investigation, which dates back to the early 1990s Balkan wars, is concluded by the appeals court decision.

As the final case involving war crimes from the wars that broke out in the early 1990s as Yugoslavia fell apart, Gatti Santana called the appeals ruling a “milestone” for the court, which deals with cases from the now-defunct U.N. war crimes courts for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda.

Serb paramilitaries in the Bosnian town of Bosanski Samac in 1992 perpetrated murder and other crimes. Stanisic and Simatovic were found guilty of aiding and abetting those crimes two years ago, although they were cleared of other charges. The appeals panel overturned both of those conclusions, and their sentences were increased.

Given the numerous requests to prosecute those responsible for the atrocities committed during the ongoing conflict in Ukraine, the length of the case highlights the difficulty of establishing war crimes in international courts.

The only Serbian government representatives who have been found guilty by a U.N. court of participating in atrocities in Bosnia are Stanisic, a former head of Serbia’s State Security Service, and Simatovic, a top intelligence agent with the service.

The Yugoslav war crimes tribunal of the U.N. first exonerated Stanisic and Simatovic, but an appeals chamber eventually mandated a retrial.

According to Brammertz, war crime cases will continue in the Balkans because so many victims and survivors remain without compensation.

“For us, it was the last case,” Brammertz said to the media. “However, we are aware that hundreds of cases still require domestic prosecution.”

Munir Tahirovic, the head of a group representing genocide and war victims in Northern Bosnia, stated that he had been waiting 30 years for a ruling implicating Belgrade in crimes committed in his nation.

This ruling also demonstrated Serbia’s aggressiveness against Croatia, he added, in addition to Bosnia and Hercegovina.

Jelena Sesar, a researcher for the rights organization Amnesty International in Europe, stated that the decision “leaves no doubt about the involvement of Serbia’s police and security services in the wartime atrocities in Bosnia and Herzegovina, which is something Serbia’s authorities continue to deny to this day.”



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57 Year Old Lolita The Whale May Someday Return To Wild, Miami Park Says




MIAMI, Fla. – Lolita, an orca whale held captive for more than a half-century, is being prepared for possible repatriation to her home waters in Washington’s Puget Sound by carers at a South Florida seaside park.

But the move has yet to be finalized, and veterinarians and trainers told WPLG in Miami this week that they’re working with Lolita to ensure she’s strong enough to survive the travel and adjust to her new surroundings.

For years, animal rights advocates have been pushing to have Lolita, also known as Tokitae or Toki, released from her tank at the Miami Seaquarium. The Dolphin Company, the park’s owner, and the nonprofit Friends of Toki revealed a plan in March to relocate the 57-year-old orca to a natural marine habitat with financial support from Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay.

Lolita is doing well, according to Jessica Comolli, director of the Miami Seaquarium’s animal health department. Since 2020, the orca has had two health scares but has recovered.


Lolita, an orca whale held captive for more than a half-century.

Lolita stopped performing last spring as part of the park’s new exhibitor’s license with the United States Department of Agriculture. She hasn’t been seen in public since. After taking over the Seaquarium last year, The Dolphin Company CEO Eduardo Albor said they spend more than $500,000 to restore Lolita’s water quality.

New modifications have been completed recently to improve the pool’s filtering and temperature regulation. According to trainer Michael Partica, new chillers may now lower the temperature to resemble the waters of the Pacific Northwest.

Any plan to relocate Lolita would still need to be approved by federal and state regulators, which might take months or years. The 5,000-pound (2,267-kilogram) Lolita fish has spent years in a tank 80 feet by 35 feet (24 meters by 11 meters) in size and 20 feet (6 meters) deep.


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