Struggling with Arrest Warrant, Russian President Putin Visits Annexed Crimea

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin traveled to Crimea to mark the ninth anniversary of the Black Sea peninsula’s annexation from Ukraine on Saturday, the working day following the International Prison Court docket issued an arrest warrant for the Russian chief accusing him of war crimes.

Russian condition news company RIA Novosti mentioned Putin visited an artwork faculty and a children’s middle, places that appeared to have been preferred in reaction to the court’s action.

The court precisely accused him Friday of bearing own accountability for the abductions of young children from Ukraine for the duration of Russia’s complete-scale invasion of the neighboring region that started off just about 13 months in the past.

Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014, a shift that most of the planet denounced as unlawful. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has demanded that Russia withdraw from the peninsula as effectively as the spots it has occupied considering that very last calendar year.

Putin has proven no intention of relinquishing the Kremlin’s gains. Instead, he pressured Friday the significance of holding Crimea.

Russian President Vladimir Putin chairs a Security Council meeting via a video link at the Kremlin in Moscow on March 17, 2023. (Photo by Mikhail METZEL / SPUTNIK / AFP)
Russian President Vladimir Putin chairs a Protection Council assembly via a online video website link at the Kremlin in Moscow on March 17, 2023. (Photograph by Mikhail METZEL / SPUTNIK / AFP)

MIKHAIL METZEL by using Getty Photos

“Obviously, protection problems consider top rated precedence for Crimea and Sevastopol now,” he said, referring to Crimea’s greatest town. “We will do every little thing wanted to fend off any threats.”

Putin took a plane to travel the 1,821 kilometers (1,132 miles) from Moscow to Sevastopol, where by he took the wheel of the vehicle that transported him about the metropolis, according to Moscow-set up governor Mikhail Razvozhaev.

Along with the artwork faculty and children’s center, Putin also toured Putin also visited the archaeological website at the ruins of the ancient Greek metropolis of Chersonesos, in accordance to Russian point out media.

The ICC’s arrest warrant was the initial issued towards a leader of a single of the 5 permanent members of the U.N. Protection Council. The court, which is centered in The Hague, Netherlands, also issued a warrant for the arrest of Maria Lvova-Belova, the commissioner for Children’s Rights in the Office environment of the President of the Russian Federation.

The shift was promptly dismissed by Moscow — and welcomed by Ukraine as a major breakthrough. Its functional implications, however, could be restricted as the odds of Putin facing trial at the ICC are really unlikely mainly because Moscow does not acknowledge the court’s jurisdiction or extradite its nationals.

A damaged restaurant is seen after Russian shelling hit in Zaporizhzhia, Ukraine, Saturday, March 18, 2023. (AP Photo/Andriy Andriyenko)
A destroyed cafe is noticed after Russian shelling hit in Zaporizhzhia, Ukraine, Saturday, March 18, 2023. (AP Image/Andriy Andriyenko)

Popular Russian attacks ongoing in Ukraine after the court’s announcement. Ukraine was attacked by 16 Russian drones on Friday night, the Ukrainian air drive claimed early Saturday.

Composing on Telegram, the air power command said that 11 out of 16 drones were shot down “in the central, western and jap areas.” Amongst spots focused ended up the cash, Kyiv, and the western Lviv province.

The head of the Kyiv metropolis administration, Serhii Popko, stated Ukrainian air defenses shot down all drones heading for the Ukrainian cash, although Lviv regional Gov. Maksym Kozytskyi explained Saturday that 3 of 6 drones ended up shot down, with the other a few hitting a district bordering Poland.

According to the Ukrainian air drive, the assaults were carried out from the eastern coast of the Sea of Azov and Russia’s Bryansk province, which borders Ukraine.

The Ukrainian navy moreover explained in its typical update Saturday early morning that Russian forces around the earlier 24 several hours launched 34 airstrikes, one particular missile strike and 57 rounds of anti-aircraft fireplace. The Fb update said that slipping particles hit the southern Kherson province, detrimental 7 residences and a kindergarten.

Russian President Vladimir Putin chairs a meeting on the social and economic development of Crimea and Sevastopol via a videoconference at the Moscow's Kremlin in Moscow, Russia, Friday, March 17, 2023. (Mikhail Metzel, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP)
Russian President Vladimir Putin chairs a conference on the social and financial improvement of Crimea and Sevastopol through a videoconference at the Moscow’s Kremlin in Moscow, Russia, Friday, March 17, 2023. (Mikhail Metzel, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo through AP)

In accordance to the Ukrainian assertion, Russia is still concentrating on offensive functions in Ukraine’s industrial east, concentrating assaults on Lyman, Bakhmut, Avdiivka, Marinka and Shakhtarsk in Ukraine’s eastern Donetsk province.

Regional Gov. Pavlo Kyrylenko said one particular person was killed and a few wounded when 11 cities and villages in the province had been shelled on Friday.

More west, Russian rockets strike a household location overnight in the metropolis of Zaporizhzhia, the regional cash of the partly occupied province of the same identify. No casualties had been claimed, but properties had been ruined Anatoliy Kurtev of the Zaporizhzhia City Council reported.

British army officers explained Saturday that Russia is probable to widen conscription to replenish its troops preventing in Ukraine. In its most current intelligence update, the U.K. Defense Ministry claimed that deputies in the Russian Duma, the lessen household of Russia’s parliament, launched a monthly bill to change the draft ages for guys to 21-30, from the existing 18-27.

The ministry mentioned that, at the minute, many men ages 18-21 claim exemptions from military services provider for the reason that they are enrolled in greater education institutions. The alter would indicate that they would at some point still have to provide. It explained the regulation would probably pass and get result in January 2024.

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