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ICC says no absentia trial for Sudan president

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February 27, 2010 (WASHINGTON) – The office of the prosecutor at the International Criminal Court (ICC) denied news reports in Khartoum that it intends to push for conducting in absentia confirmation of charges hearing for Sudanese president Omer Hassan Al-Bashir.

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International Criminal Court prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo (AP)

“There is a procedure for confirmation of charges in absentia under the Rome statute but the OTP [Office of the prosecutor] is not considering this option at the moment” Béatrice Le Fraper du Hellen, Head of Jurisdiction, Complementarity and Cooperation told Sudan Tribune in an email.

Article 61 of the Rome Statute states that “the Pre-Trial Chamber may, upon request of the Prosecutor or on its own motion, hold a hearing in the absence of the person charged to confirm the charges….when the person has Waived his or her right to be present or Fled or cannot be found and all reasonable steps have been taken to secure his or her appearance before the Court”.

Sudan does not recognize the court and so far Bashir has evaded travelling to ICC signatories with obligation to arrest him.

“We are preparing additional evidence in relation to President Al Bashir’s intent to commit genocide, and the cover up of such crimes by the Sudanese state apparatus including HAC [Humanitarian Affairs Committee] and foreign affairs officials” du Hellen said.

“Since the arrest warrant was issued against President Al Bashir by the judges in March of 2009, he is being marginalized and isolated in the international community, and the Sudanese authorities are forced to show goodwill in peace negotiations. We will continue to work towards the increased isolation and finally the arrest of President Al Bashir. This is our priority” she added.

The ICC issued an arrest warrant for Bashir a year ago accusing him of masterminding war crimes and crimes against humanity in Sudan’s Western region of Darfur.

Earlier this month the appeal chamber opened the door for adding the three counts of genocide after it ruled that the Pre-Trial judges erred in applying the legal standard for assessing the prosecutor’s request in adding these charges.

The judges will now have to decide anew whether there is reasonable evidence to determine whether Bashir can be tried for genocide.

Sudan has condemned the appeal chamber decision saying its timing is meant to sabotage the elections and the Darfur peace process.

On Wednesday the ICC prosecutor requested a closed hearing with the pre-trial judges saying it intends to file additional information.

“The Prosecution considers that a hearing would provide it with an opportunity to seek the Chamber’s guidance on the most efficient and appropriate means to proceed” the prosecutor’s requests reads.

The prosecutor has said in the past that a decision on the genocide charges could take up to a year.

(ST)

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Kind regards,

The Sudan Tribune editorial team.
  • 28 February 2010 08:39, by Dinka Boy

    ICC must arrest this Criminal Omer Bashier for the crime against humanity in Darfur.Please arrset him sooner no latter.
    Thanks

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    • 28 February 2010 09:08, by SPLA

      Dinkaboy,

      Eventually, Bashier will be arrested but it will take time because he has been avoiding to travel to countries that are obligated to arrest him. As a sitting president, it is very hard for ICC to arrest him. The only way to guarantee Bashier’s arrest is for Sudanese people not to elect him as a president for another team. That way the elected president can hand him over to ICC. If there is a justice in the world then Bashier and his accomplices along with some other Southern criminals and militia leader must be arrested and put to trial for the genocide that they committed in Sudan at large

      SPLA

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      • 28 February 2010 12:08, by Shadrack Nuer Machut

        ICC should continue to strongly follow up its priorities as well as possible.
        I totally support it very highly. The war inducers should harvest what they had cultivated.

        repondre message

    • 28 February 2010 16:44, by kuur Deng

      I’m tired of this criminal courts of dragging their feet in arresting Beshir.This is an acceptable ,What is business of always announcing the arrest warrants instead to plans quitely and brought the thief to the book of justics.I think these white people have hands in Sudanese problems and they want bargening. Please Luise, step out if you want to worse our situation or else you stop open up your mouth without action.

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  • 28 February 2010 13:33, by Time1

    Ocampo we also want you to bring to ICC other criminals, those European mercenaries involve in supporting LRA, involve in killings in Congo and Central Africa republic to ICC, do not pick when it come to Justice wether europeans or Africans they should all face justice, it is the ICCs job to investigate any allegations like they did in Darfur.

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    • 28 February 2010 16:13, by DASODIKO

      Please there is one person named Taif in Genena from North Sudan, who is in charge of HAC is one of those who helped Bashir to commit his Genocide. This guy is well known for all ORGs working in Genena. In 2007 when I was working for acted when displacement innocent civilians happenned all ORGs working in Genena including WFP requested him to supply the needs for the dispalced people in Riad camp; he turned down all the applications.

      As a foreigner I cried why a Sudanese man deny food for his own people? hee heeeeeee I am still crying while I am writting this short comment.

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      • 28 February 2010 20:38, by Mathiang BT

        ICC should arrest this Bashir, I wish ICC good luck in arrest Bashir. Bashir is like HIV now in Sudan Killing people everyday.

        He is human like others he had killed..
        ICC oyeeeeee

        repondre message

        • 1 March 2010 05:57, by Aduol Liet

          To: all ICC Judges and personnel.

          We hope God will help you and guide in your path every direction to says what will benefit to the people and perhaps, the world nations as a whole. Our doubtability to this killer case of Omar al Bashir has remain to be seen on the United Nation failure to arrested him and other who fought for human rights too slow and for the fact that, Omar al Bashir he have had been indicted last year even some cases have been left out andthey were important charges for example the genocide case should be include, but so far the indictment was announce we have never seen any action taken happen against the Sudan’s president Omar al Bashir, the most and bad criminal wanted in the world of Africa nations. Our appreciation to you guys ICC Judges will not last since our demanding still needed but we thank you very much although Omar al Bashir did not get the jail. I think God will punish Omar al Bashir in many ways.

          The U.N. And its Evaluation now for the Sudan’s case is very very poor indeed, and I think if they don’t do something about it then, many leaders around the world’s dictatorships will not going to obeying the rule of law at least Omar al Bashir must be arrested now. As I said, our appreciations will not last since our our demanding still needed this is true, we have many cases need the ICC Judges and other world to pay attention in Sudan particular the independence of Southern Sudan and Sudan nation has about five Regions namely North Sudan, Southern Sudan, Eastern Sudan, Central Sudan known as Nubia Mountaints and Western Darfuri as everyone had hear it. These five Regions in Sudan, the ICC Judges and other world need to have some Ideas, because the North Sudan have been dominated four Regions which is not fair for one side to control everything and that is the problems assume to come up and the ICC Judges need to pay attention later on if the Southern Sudan get independence.

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          • 1 March 2010 06:18, by BUSTA 2

            What is wrong with Ocampo surely???

            Bashir is now working hard to win the election and this so called ICC is on his neck what hell does Ocampo want in Sudan??

            Doesn’t Ocampo have other issue to do than all the time on H. E Bashir?

            To hell with ICC Bashir is going to win this coming election.

            Brother in Christ,

            Bustaa 2

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            • 1 March 2010 08:08, by Master

              Your right Brother Busta — The ICC and the other morons above have nothing better to do. They have not been affected by Bashir directly. All they have is resentment, hatred and racist ideas towards Arabs, Muslims and Northers. Bashir gave them peace, he gave them the choice of independence. Yet like back stabbing cheating woman they want to hand him over to the ICC. If you guys blame Bashir for the War in the south .. then you have to be as dumb as you sound. The millions that died on the war in the South were from both sides. But the West has brain washed you ignorant ’’lost boys’’ who obviously have no idea what your " old" country is going through. I say old country because now that you are Americans, Australian or whatever you are, only serve the purpose of the West and have no dignity or respect for your Country. Traitors !!

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