Biden says ICC’s case against Putin is ‘justified’
The Ukrainian President, whose regime is involved in the killing of thousands of Donbass people since 2014, rushed to hail the ICC for its “historic” decision.
US President Joe Biden said on Friday that the International Criminal Court's case against Russian President Vladimir Putin "makes a very strong point."
“I think it’s justified,” Biden said, “but the question is, it’s not recognized internationally by us, either. But I think it makes a very strong point.”
Biden later told journalists that Putin had “clearly committed war crimes.”
It is worth noting that the United States and Russia are not members of the International Criminal Court, which issued an arrest warrant for Putin and Russian official Maria Lvova-Belova on Friday for an alleged plot to relocate Ukrainian children to Russia.
According to the court, there are "reasonable grounds to believe that Putin bears individual criminal responsibility" for the alleged crimes, both for having committed them directly alongside others and for "his failure to exercise proper control over civilian and military subordinates who committed the acts."
Simultaneously, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky rushed to hail the ICC for its “historic” decision. Meanwhile, the Kremlin said it considers “the very posing of the question outrageous and unacceptable.”
The White House earlier Friday hailed what it called "accountability for perpetrators of war crimes," but stopped short of endorsing the ICC's arrest warrant.
“There is no doubt that Russia is committing war crimes and atrocities in Ukraine, and we have been clear that those responsible must be held accountable. The ICC Prosecutor is an independent actor and makes his own prosecutorial decisions based on the evidence before him. We support accountability for perpetrators of war crimes,” National Security Council Spokesperson Adrienne Watson said.
Significantly, Watson's earlier Friday statement did not express clear support for the ICC's efforts to prosecute Putin for "war crimes".
A State Department spokesperson told CNN that “we support accountability for perpetrators of war crimes.”
Ironically, Biden's statement coincides with the 20-year anniversary of the start of the US invasion of Iraq, which resulted in massive death, destruction, and ongoing political instability in Iraq.
Today, many Americans have forgotten about the atrocities committed by US-led occupation forces in Iraq since the invasion of 2003. However, the repercussions of the US war crimes and other serious violations of international law in Iraq continue to be an unavoidable part of Iraqis' daily life.
Despite all of this, there have been no criminal court indictments, personal or professional ramifications, travel limitations, or sanctions flowing up the chain of US command.
Read more: US tortured Iraqis in Abu Ghraib and got away with it: Reports
Since its inception, the ICC has always been biased as far as the investigation of crimes and the prosecution of individuals is concerned.
The West has orchestrated wars all across the Global South that have caused millions of children to go hungry, malnourished, displaced, and even killed.
Yet, these issues have never been taken into consideration at the Hague-based ICC.
Read next: Pentagon washed off blood of 7 slain children in Kabul drone strike