The Darfur Consortium

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Member Publications

African Media Coverage

March 16-31, 2008

Nigeria: Daily Trust
“Al-Bashir and the politics of war crimes”
Published: March 28, 2023

Sudan, the largest country in Africa and once regarded as the potential breadbasket of the Arab world has in its over fifty years of independence been devastated by a series of civil wars and internal turmoil that threatened its survival. Again, the country is making the headlines, this time not for civil wars but its aftermath. The International Criminal Court (ICC) has issued an arrest warrant on President Omar Al-Bashir. The ICC has advanced reasons for this: accusations of human rights violation in the Darfur region of Sudan. The move was, according to the African Union Commission through its Chairman Mr. Jean Ping, ‘pouring fuel on the fire’. The AU is trying ‘to extinguish the fire, the ICC put more oil in the fire’, he said.

Provincial governor, Osman Mohammed Youssef said ICC prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo has a ‘wicked political stance aiming at cutting the ongoing efforts to solve Darfur’s issue peacefully’, adding that Sudan is not a signatory of the ICC and the court has no jurisdiction over Sudan, its people or government. The civil war in the Darfur region, no doubt, is adjudged one of the worst humanitarian crises in history. But can the latest move by the ICC (that is the attempt to arrest the Sudanese President) help in resolving the crisis? Invariably, no! The actions of the ICC and the reluctance of the United Nations, African Union and the Arab League to bring the war to an end represent the usual double standards of international players when it affects poor countries.

Read the article here.

Rwanda: The New Times
“A Warrant of Hypocrisy”
Published: March 20, 2023

Earlier this month, the International Criminal Court (ICC) upheld the request of the court’s chief prosecutor to issue an arrest warrant for Omar Al Bashir, the president of Sudan, charging him with war crimes and crimes against humanity. Bashir responded by expelling foreign aid agencies looking after the refugee camps in Darfur.

This is the first time that a sitting head of state has been indicted for war crimes, with reaction around the world mainly divided between those who hailed the move as a great step for international justice and those who condemned it as colonialism. Both positions are hopelessly buried in intellectual and moral fog.

The warrant was no leap forward. From the legal point of view, it makes no difference whether the accused is a sitting or former head of state. But it makes an enormous practical difference that an incumbent ruler can do a lot more future damage to his people than an ex-ruler, and therefore should be given no incentive to retaliate.

As a result of Bashir’s policies, 300,000 people are estimated to have died and 2.7 million displaced in Darfur. The expulsion of the aid agencies has put over a million Darfuris at risk of epidemics and starvation. According to the statute that established the ICC, the prosecutor is required to ensure that any prosecution is in the interests of the victims as well as of justice. But to lawyers like the ICC prosecutor, the abstract claims of justice are more vivid than any concrete duty of protection. In this case, justice comes with poisoned arrows.

Read the article here.

Uganda: Daily Monitor
“After chest thumping and defiance, Bashir opts for a ‘friendlier’ court”
Published: March 18, 2023

Banking on its allies in the UN Security Council, Sudan is pushing to defer the warrant of arrest of President Omar al-Bashir. Sudan wants the matter handled by the UN Security Council in the hope it will be forwarded to the International Court of Justice which handles international disputes but not criminal suspects writes Emeka-Mayaka Gekara

Reality is fast dawning on Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir. That Khartoum plans to refer the warrant of arrest issued by the International Criminal Court to the “friendlier” International Court of Justice after Mr Bashir’s defiance and scornful chest-thumping, could be a sign of his realisation that the odds are highly against him.

The warrant issued last week by the International Criminal Court had effectively reduced him to a pariah and a fugitive who will be boxed in his country and friendly states, mainly in Africa and the Arab world.

Read the article here.



African Voices
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African Security Dialogue and Research (ASDR)

African Women's Development and Communications Network (FEMNET)

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