Mr. Bashir is wanted by the International Criminal Court.
Saudi Arabia has denied permission for a plane carrying Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir to cross its airspace for the swearing-in of the new Iranian president, Aljazeera television has reported.
“The Saudi authorities refused to give the plane carrying President Bashir permission to cross their airspace,” Emad Sayed Ahmed, the presidential press secretary, was quoted as saying on Sunday.
Mr. Ahmed said Bashir was not flying in his normal presidential aircraft but was using a plane rented from a Saudi company.
Mr. Al Bashir is wanted by the International Criminal Court on charges of crimes against humanity committed in Darfur region of Sudan.
An arrest warrant for his arrest can be enforced by countries that are signatories to the ICC’s Rome statute. Only a few countries have welcomed the Sudanese leader into their territories.
His last foreign trip was to Nigeria in July with calls from rights group and the ICC for the Nigerian government to effect his arrest.
The Sudanese leader was travelling to attend Iranian President Hassan Rouhani’s swearing-in before the Iranian parliament.
The Saudi presidential secretary Mr. Ahmed said that when Mr. Bashir’s plane entered Saudi airspace, the pilot informed authorities that it had approval “and that it was carrying President Bashir”.
“But they said the plane didn’t have permission,” forcing it to return to Khartoum, he said.
The Hague-based International Criminal Court in 2009 and 2010 issued two warrants against Mr. Bashir for war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide over the conflict in Sudan’s Darfur region.
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