Medvedev says Putin arrest would be 'war'
Russia's former leader Dmitry Medvedev said if Putin were arrested in Germany, for example, "all our missiles ... would fly to the Bundestag." Meanwhile, Russia has launched a new military satellite.
Russia's ex-President Dmitry Medvedev has warned that any attempt to arrest President Vladimir Putin abroad would be seen as "a declaration of war."
The International Criminal Court (ICC) based in The Hague issued an arrest warrant for Putin last week for alleged war crimes.
"Let's imagine — obviously this situation which will never be realized — but nevertheless lets imagine that it was realized: The current head of the nuclear state went to a territory, say Germany, and was arrested," Medvedev said in a video posted to Telegram late on Wednesday.
"What would that be? It would be a declaration of war on the Russian Federation," he said. "And in that case, all our assets — all our missiles et cetera — would fly to the Bundestag, to the Chancellor's office."
Medvedev, who served as Russia's president from 2008 until 2012 and now deputy chairman of Russia's security council, has made increasingly hawkish statements about the invasion of Ukraine.
Russia, which is not a party to the ICC, initially called the arrest warrant "null and void."
On Monday, Russia's Investigative Committee opened its criminal investigation in to the ICC's chief prosecutor Karim Khan. It said Khan's actions may have breached two Russian laws relating to accusing an innocent person of a crime, and "preparing an attack on a representative of a foreign state enjoying international protection, in order to complicate international relations."
On Wednesday, the ICC's legislative body condemned "threats" against the tribunal over its warrant.
"The presidency of the assembly regrets these attempts to hinder international efforts to ensure accountability for acts that are prohibited under general international law," it said in a statement.