Hungary says it will not comply with Putin’s arrest warrant

Viktor Orban

The Government of Hungary assured this Thursday (03.23.2023) that Russian President Vladimir Putin would not be detained in Magyar territory despite the international arrest warrant issued by the International Criminal Court (ICC), since the statute of that court has not been enacted in the Central European country.

“Hungary could not stop Putin, because the statute of the ICC has not been promulgated, since it is unconstitutional,” explained the Minister of the Interior, Gergely Gulyás, to the press.

The ICC this month issued an arrest warrant against Putin as “suspected” of the illegal deportation of children and their transfer from occupied areas in Ukraine to Russia, which translates into a war crime under the Rome Statute, the treaty foundation of the court, which has been signed by 123 countries.

Following the ICC announcement, the High Representative of the European Union (EU) for Foreign Affairs, Josep Borrell, assured that Russian President Vladimir Putin can be arrested “immediately” in “more than 130 countries.”

Hungary has not incorporated the Rome Statute, the founding document of the ICC, into its legislation for more than 20 years, despite having signed it in 1998 and subsequently ratified it. The Hungarian government of ultranationalist Viktor Orbán, considered Moscow’s best ally in the EU, in power since 2002, has not taken steps to formally incorporate it into the country’s legal corpus either.