Russian President Vladimir Putin will skip Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) summit to be hosted by South Africa.
South Africa’s Presidency confirms that, by mutual agreement Putin will not attend the BRICS summit in SA in August.
Instead, a Russian delegation to be led by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will attend on Putin’s behalf.
The International Criminal Court had issued a warranty of arrest against Putin over Ukraine war calling SA to arrest him if he sets foot in the country.
However, SA had indicated that it will not arrest Putin.
The possible visit of Putin posed a conundrum for South Africa, as the country is a member of the IICC. The body issued an arrest warrant for Putin over his alleged role in the “kidnapping” of Ukrainian children.
Russia has dismissed the charges as politically motivated and misrepresenting the evacuations of minors from the conflict zone.
“Russia has made it clear that arresting its sitting president would be a declaration of war,” Ramaphosa explained in a court filing released on Tuesday. “It would be inconsistent with our constitution to risk engaging in war with Russia.”