World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Sudan Failed To Cooperate With ICC - Prosecutor


Sudan has failed to cooperate with International Criminal Court, prosecutor says

The Sudanese Government is not cooperating with the International Criminal Court (ICC), its Chief Prosecutor said today, calling on the Security Council to send "a strong and unanimous message" to Khartoum to arrest and surrender two men accused of committing war crimes during the conflict in Darfur.

Luis Moreno-Ocampo told a Council meeting that although "Sudan has known the nature of the case against Ahmad Harun and Ali Kushayb for 10 months, they have done nothing. They have taken no steps to prosecute them domestically, or to arrest and transfer them to The Hague [where the ICC is based]."

Mr. Harun, currently Sudan's Minister of State for Humanitarian Affairs, and Mr. Kushayb, a leader of a pro-Government Janjaweed militia, are accused of targeting civilians in attacks on four villages in West Darfur between August 2003 and March 2004, according to their warrants, which outline multiple counts of personal responsibility for murder, rape and pillaging for each man.

"The only realist solution today is to request the removal and arrest of [Mr.] Harun as a first step to any solution," Mr. Moreno-Ocampo told Council members. "It will send a signal to the perpetrators of crimes in Darfur that the international community is not only watching, but will hold them accountable for their actions."

The Prosecutor said "massive crimes continued to be committed" across Darfur, where at least 200,000 people have been killed since 2003 and up to 2.5 million others forced to leave their homes because of fighting between rebel groups, Government forces and allied Janjaweed militias.

He is planning to open two new investigations into the situation in Darfur: one into "a pattern of attacks by Sudanese officials" against civilians, and the other into the rising number of attacks, with involvement by rebels, against peacekeepers and aid workers.

"In Darfur in 2003-2004, we witnessed the first phase of the criminal plan coordinated by Ahmad Harun. Millions of people were forced out of their villages and into camps. In the second phase - happening right now in front of our eyes - the victims are attacked in the camps."

Mr. Moreno-Ocampo said that to characterize recent attacks and crimes as "sporadic violence" or "inter-tribal clashes" only served to cover up the reality.

"We are witnessing a calculated, organized campaign by Sudanese officials to attack individuals and further destroy the social fabric of entire communities. All information points not to chaotic and isolated acts, but to a pattern of attacks."

He added that Darfur's displaced are routinely subjected to persecution and abuses, such as unlawful killings, illegal detentions and episodes of sexual violence, while those living inside camps for internally displaced persons (IDPs) "are deliberately kept in a state of destitution. Obstacles to the delivery of aid are part of the pattern of attacks."

Mr. Moreno-Ocampo expressed particular concern that Mr. Harun, despite being indicted by the ICC, was responsible as a Sudanese Government minister for providing relief to the victims of violence and displacement in Darfur.

"Formally, he shares responsibility for the safety and well-being of the displaced population. In reality, he joins in constant abuses against them," he said, accusing a component of Mr. Harun's ministry of promoting organized disturbances in the camps.

Mr. Moreno-Ocampo said Mr. Harun has also been present during specific operations against IDP camps in recent months, and added that he was last month appointed to a national group overseeing the deployment of UNAMID, the hybrid UN-African Union peacekeeping force that is being set up to try to quell the violence and suffering in Darfur.

"Maintaining Harun is his position is a direct threat to millions of victims and to the humanitarian workers and peacekeepers seeking to protect them. When will be a better time to arrest Harun? How many more women, girls, have to be raped? How many persons have to be killed? Must we really wait, again, for the destruction of entire communities?"

Turning to the increasing number of attacks against aid workers and peacekeepers, he noted that in late October 10 soldiers of the existing AU mission in Sudan were killed, eight others injured and one unaccounted for after an attack on the mission's base at Haskanita.

"Such attacks or threats of attack on peacekeepers and aid personnel will be investigated by my Office. They can constitute a war crime under the Statute. They also further undermine efforts to protect the civilian population.

The Prosecutor added that "we note with concern that the Sudan is taking no measures to protect international forces. There are allegations that some Sudanese aircraft have been painted with UN or AU colours and are used in Darfur. Such acts - among others - undermine the UN and AU, create the impression of collusion and can encourage attacks against them."

The ICC is an independent, permanent court that investigates and prosecutes individuals accused of the most serious crimes of international concerns, such as genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. Prosecutors at the Court are currently probing four situations: Darfur, northern Uganda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and the Central African Republic (CAR).

ENDS

More: Latest World News | Top World News | World Digest | Archives

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>

ALSO:

Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>

ALSO:


Gordon Campbell: On Bidding Bye Bye To Boris

Boris Johnson’s exit from the contest for Conservative Party leadership supports the conspiracy theory that he never really expected the “Leave” option to win the referendum – and he has no intention now of picking up the poisoned chalice that managing the outcome will entail... More>>

ALSO:

Mexico: Violence And Repression Of Teachers

The member organizations of Network for Peace express our indignation over the acts of repression that the Mexican State has carried out, through the police forces... In Chiapas, Guerrero and Oaxaca, the conflict has resulted in murders of teachers and civilians as well as hundreds of wounded and dozens of people arrested. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Britain's Pleas For Mercy

So… Boris Johnson is promising that he won't be holding a snap general election, if he's chosen as the next UK Conservative Party leader. Reportedly, he is even making that promise a feature of his leadership campaign, since a vote for Boris would therefore mean (wink wink) that his colleagues wouldn't have to risk their jobs and face the wrath of the British public until 2020. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news