ICC prosecutor renews call for Al Bashir’s arrest

Omar Al-Bashir, Sudan President
Omar Al-Bashir, Sudan President

The Prosecutor for the International Criminal Court, Fatou Bensouda, has called for arrest and handing over of Sudan’s President Omar Al Bashir over alleged genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity.

Ms. Bensouda made the call at a UN Security Council meeting on the situation in Sudan and South Sudan, according to a statement obtained in New York.

The ICC prosecutor particularly slammed South Africa and Jordan for failing to arrest Al Bashir over crimes committed in the Darfur region of Sudan when he travelled to the countries.

She said a pre-trial chamber of the Court plans to decide whether South Africa acted in non-compliance with the Statute when it failed to arrest and surrender Al Bashir in June 2015.

Most recently, Mr. Al Bashir travelled to Jordan on March 29, 2017, but Jordan declined to arrest and surrender him.

“Inviting, facilitating or supporting the international travel of any person subject to an ICC arrest warrant is inconsistent with a commitment to international criminal justice.

“It is also an affront to the victims in the Darfur situation,” she said.

Ms. Bensouda noted that to date, the Court had made 13 decisions on non-compliance and referred them to the Security Council.

The ICC prosecutor, however, regretted that “yet not one has been acted upon by this Council.

“By failing to act in response to such Court decisions, this Council is in essence relinquishing and undermining its clear role on such matters”.

The prosecutor said there had been alleged cases of non-compliance by the parties to the treaty.

“Not one of the suspects for whom warrants have been issued has been arrested and transferred to the International Criminal Court.

“To those who continue to long for justice in Darfur; do not despair and do not abandon hope,” she told victims of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity, and their families,” Ms. Bensouda told Council.

She recalled that the international tribunals for Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia were reminders that persistence and determination could result in the arrest and surrender of suspects many years after the issuance of arrest warrants.

The ICC was established by the treaty known as the Rome Statute adopted at an international conference in Rome on July 17, 1998 and it entered into force on July 1, 2002.

“The States that form this Council have the power, independently and collectively, to positively influence and incentivize States, whether or not parties to the Rome Statute.

“To assist in the efforts to arrest and surrender the Darfur suspects,” she said, adding that regional organizations can do the same.

In 2005, the Council asked the Hague-based Court to investigate war crimes in Darfur.

ICC judges issued arrest warrants in 2009 for Mr. Al-Bashir and other top officials for genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes in the western Darfur region.

No fewer than 300,000 people were reported to have died and millions displaced in Darfur since civil war erupted in 2003 between the government and rebels.

(NAN)

Support PREMIUM TIMES' journalism of integrity and credibility

 

Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.

For continued free access to the best investigative journalism in the country we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.

By contributing to PREMIUM TIMES, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.

Donate


NEVER MISS A THING AGAIN! Subscribe to our newsletter

* indicates required

DOWNLOAD THE PREMIUM TIMES MOBILE APP

Now available on

  Premium Times Android mobile applicationPremium Times iOS mobile applicationPremium Times blackberry mobile applicationPremium Times windows mobile application

TEXT AD: This space is available for a Text_Ad.. Call Willie on +2347088095401 for more information


All rights reserved. This material and any other material on this platform may not be reproduced, published, broadcast, written or distributed in full or in part, without written permission from PREMIUM TIMES.