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Business News/ News / World/  Russian President Vladimir Putin to skip BRICS summit in South Africa due to arrest threat. Details here
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Russian President Vladimir Putin to skip BRICS summit in South Africa due to arrest threat. Details here

Russian President Vladimir Putin will not attend the BRICS summit in South Africa next month. He will join the summit virtually, while other leaders will attend in person.

 South Africa's opposition party had asked a court to force the government to arrest Putin if he attends the summit. (via REUTERS)Premium
South Africa's opposition party had asked a court to force the government to arrest Putin if he attends the summit. (via REUTERS)

Russian President Vladimir Putin will not attend next Russian President Vladimir Putin will not attend the BRICS summit in South Africa next month. Putin will be the only BRICS leader to attend the summit virtually while all other leaders will join the event in person in South Africa.

“By mutual agreement, President Vladimir Putin of the Russian Federation will not attend the summit but the Russian Federation will be represented by Foreign Minister Mr. Sergei Lavrov," South African President said in a statement.

Russian spokesperson Dmitry Peskov also confirmed that Putin will attend the event via video conferencing while Foreign Minister Lavrov will be present in person.

The move is seen as a major setback for Putin, who has touted his relations with the BRICS countries - India, China, Brazil and South Africa - as evidence that US and European efforts to isolate him over the war in Ukraine have failed.

Why will Putin skip the BRICS summit?

The International Criminal Court had issued an arrest warrant for Russian President Putin in March this year, linking him to the war crime of deporting Ukrainian children. Putin could be arrested under the warrant if he leaves Russian soil.

South Africa is a signatory to the Rome Statute that established the ICC and is bound by the court's decisions. However, the African country drew international criticism in 2015 when it refused to execute an ICC arrest warrant against then-Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir during the African Summit.

To further complicate matters, South Africa's main opposition party, the Democratic Alliance, had asked a Pretoria court to force the government to arrest the Russian president if he attended the BRICS summit.

South African President's spokesman Vincent Magwenya noted that the decision for Putin not to attend the BRICS summit was made after 'a series of consultations' that lasted until last night.

 

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Published: 20 Jul 2023, 08:14 AM IST
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