Home | News    Friday 24 May 2013

Sudan says AU to agree on mass withdrawal from ICC

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May 23, 2013 (WASHINGTON) – The African Union summit in Addis Ababa will adopt a resolution endorsing an en masse withdrawal of its members from the International Criminal Court (ICC), a senior Sudanese official said today.

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Sudan’s President Al-Bashir, wearing a southern traditional dress, attends a protest with southern Sudanese against the ICC arrest warrant for him, in Khartoum March 7, 2009. (Reuters)

“We expect the African summit taking place in the coming days to endorse a decision to withdraw from it [the ICC],” presidential assistant Nafie Ali Nafie was quoted by Sudan official news agency (SUNA).

Nafie said that the ICC practices “proved beyond reasonable doubt that it is a court to serve European international goals….making it a pressure tool on Africa”.

This week the Sudanese ambassador to Ethiopia Sir al-Khitm Khalifa said that Uganda and Kenya made a last minute push to include the ICC issue on the AU summit agenda.

The Kenyan government has been recently on the offensive with the AU and the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) seeking to terminate the ICC case against its president Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto.

Both men face charges of masterminding post-election violence (PEV) in 2007-2008 that drew regional and international outcry.

The Kenyan parliament failed twice to agree on establishing a local tribunal to investigate PEV and pushed for ICC intervention.

However after the ICC produced list of suspects which included six figures, Nairobi sought to have the cases deferred by lobbying the AU and UNSC for invoking Article 16 of the Rome Statute which is the founding text of the ICC.

But the UNSC brushed aside the joint requests submitted by the AU and Kenya.

Following the ascension of Kenyatta and Ruto into office through last month’s elections, the Kenyan government renewed its efforts to have the case dropped arguing that it has the potential of throwing the country into new turmoil.

After his election, Kenyatta said that his country will honor its international obligations as long as they respect his country’s sovereignty which was seen as a sign by some observers that he may not cooperate with the ICC.

The draft text submitted to African foreign ministers at the AU summit in Ethiopia said the ICC trials risked destabilising Kenya when it was undertaking deep reforms to avoid a repeat of the post-election violence five years ago that killed more than 1,200 people.

"We request the countries of the African Union and all friendly nations to ... urge the ICC to terminate the case or refer it [to Kenya] in view of the changes to Kenya’s judiciary and constitutional framework," said the paper seen by Reuters.

Ramtane Lamamra, AU commissioner for peace and security, said that while the continent wanted justice, there was a need to balance this with national reconciliation.

"We’ll reach a solution that will be very close to the document submitted by the region and Kenya," Lamamra told Reuters. "The termination of the case before the court, that will be the best option ... which the parties are working on currently.

Kenya found support from South Sudan’s president Salva Kiir who lashed at the ICC in an unprecedented manner and vowed that his country will never to join the Hague-based court saying it appears to have been established to “only humiliate African leaders”.

"It seems that this thing has been meant for African leaders, that they have to be humiliated...we never accept it…We will sit together with our brothers and sisters in Kenya," Kiir said at a press conference with his Kenyan counterpart in Juba.

South Sudan has taken a neutral stance to the ICC In the past though some of its officials said they are considering joining the court which indicted Sudanese president Omer Hassan al-Bashir.

A foreign minister said some countries were calling for all African signatories to withdraw their ICC membership.

"But they won’t carry the day," the minister, who also asked to remain anonymous, told Reuters.

The ICC has opened investigations into eight cases, all of which are in Africa including Uganda, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Central African Republic (CAR), Darfur, Kenya, Libya, Côte d’Ivoire and Mali.

Five of the eight cases were referred voluntarily by the African governments in question; two through a UNSC resolution supported by the bulk of African members in the council at the time and one was opened at the ICC prosecutor’s request.

But the AU has insisted that the court is unfairly targeting African nations and sought to introduce changes to the Rome Statute that would change the mechanisms of ICC case deferrals. It also pushed for the appointment of an African prosecutor which came to light with the election of Gambian lawyer Fatou Bensouda into this post last year.

(ST)

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  • 24 May 2013 08:34, by Adok Son

    Nothing call resolution endorsing an masse withdrawal of its members from the ( ICC ) Nafie Ali Nafie you are wrong criminal Omer Bashir can not escape from his heinous crimes committed by him against humanity in Darfur region yes everyone knows since Uhuru Kenyatta been elected as President of Kenya Omer feel so comfortable and happy as he has an equal friend of legal status.

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    • 24 May 2013 09:01, by Robot

      THIS IS RIDICULOUS.. WHAT CAN THOSE TALKING LIKE THIS TELL THE VICTIMS OF GENOCIDE?????, I WISH PEOPLE TALK WITH INTEREST BUT IT IS BETTER WE UNDERSTAND THE REPERCUSSIONS LATER. I AM DISAPPOINTED AND IN DISCONTENT WITH THIS STATEMENTS OF WITHDRAWAL FROM ICC. IT IS HYPOCRISY.

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      • 24 May 2013 09:24, by Northern Sudanese

        Robot
        why can’t your south sudanese just accept the fact that there was no GENOCIDE at all in Sudan! that is why the African Union,Arab league and Islamic world support Bashir! even your masters in USA and Israel don’t recognize ICC
        Africa is waking up! ICC is a joke, from Sudan to Kenya to Cote Divoire to Libya,god knows who’s next!ICC is a joke, they didn’t indict Bush or Blair or Netenyahu!

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        • 24 May 2013 09:48, by Akoch A. Magardit

          @Robot, you have presented a very good argument in which one could agree or disagree. However, whichever the case may be, it does make a point.

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        • 24 May 2013 10:17, by Robot

          Northern Sudanese,
          i am always not interested in unhealthy debate in this forum,,, neither do i consider anyone my master. let me give you a clear insight or tips to how this might turn very controversial. genocide in Darfur is ethnic cleansing, in Kenya dogs were even feasting on people when Uhuru and Muthaura met in State house to plan mass killing of Nandis and luos. NOBODY WEARS A PRIDE TO KIL

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          • 24 May 2013 13:44, by Northern Sudanese

            Robot
            where do you get this info from? ICC right? isn’t the exact organisation where African states are planning to withdraw from? which most of the world doesn’t recognize? there is no genocide!
            Its better to have an unhealthy debate than a disease spreading debate :)

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        • 24 May 2013 12:33, by Reuben

          Northern Sudan
          Why should ICC indict Busy, Blair an Natanyahu?

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          • 24 May 2013 13:46, by Northern Sudanese

            Bush = 1 million iraqis + destroyed afghanistan
            Netenyahu = palestine ethnic cleansing

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  • 24 May 2013 10:27, by BM Bol

    The so-called African Union may withdraw from the ICC, but that doesn’t exonerate criminal Bashir from the crimes has have committed. so, no celebration for him to say the less.

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    • 24 May 2013 12:12, by Kushoku

      That is right even the UN can give up persuing justice and stop the ICC from functionig,but the sudanese pple,the families of over amillion victims of this criminal albashir and his NCP will never rest till we see justice served,remember Lybia,Iraq,Romania,Nazi Germany.....

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      • 24 May 2013 19:31, by Rommel

        Kushoku:
        I lost my sister to Bashir’s regime, but justice and the ICC cannot be realistically and coherently conflated — they are paradigmatically opposed; the ICC is the antipode of Justice. You are being naive if you think that the ICC genuinely cares about achieving justice for you, any other Sudanese or any other African.

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        • 24 May 2013 19:35, by Rommel

          Our collective naivety as Africans is precisely why we occupy the bottom of the global food chain, and why we are the subjects of laughter, pity and contempt worldwide, in need of perpetual, genetically modified food aid while trillions in dollars of our resources are being siphoned away by Western multinationals and their supine puppets within the African continent.

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  • 24 May 2013 19:25, by Rommel

    The ICC is nothing but the inglorious rebirth of imperial démodé. As if to mock the very concept of international law, France at one and the same time ratified the statute of this pseudo court and declared that it did not recognize its jurisdiction over war crimes except when alleged to have been committed by non-French citizens or on non-French territories.

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    • 24 May 2013 19:25, by Rommel

      Diplomacy and *international law* involve demonstrating the benefits and/or risks of proposed international arrangements for all potential parties - and not just for some. Despite all the ’countries’ that have ratified the Rome Treaty... the ICC is merely an instrument of European coercion.

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      • 24 May 2013 19:25, by Rommel

        The Europeans provide over 60% of the funding for the ICC. Money rules the roost — the golden rule is simple: the one with the gold, rules. It matters not how many impoverished, indebted, occupied and sycophantic satrapies join this absurd institution. The ICC is an unaccountable, diseased pus spewing European boil!

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        • 24 May 2013 19:39, by Rommel

          That the ICC permits the inclusion of ‘evidence’ provided under the cloak of anonymity makes an irreverent mockery of the Audi alteram partem principle — in that the accused and the defence are unable to confront and cross-examine the witnesses (s). The right to a fair and speedy trial – revoked! The presumption of innocence – revoked!

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          • 24 May 2013 19:40, by Rommel

            The right to confront and cross examine one’s accuser (s) (audi alteram partem) – revoked! The Equality of arms – revoked! Double jeopardy (Ne bis in idem) – revoked! Legal accountability – revoked! The right of appeal – revoked! These due process guarantees were so irreverently rescinded, immolated and subsequently buried in the legal bungling that was the Thomas Lubanga “trial”.

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            • 24 May 2013 19:46, by Rommel

              Justice stripped bare of all its identifiable components is not justice. Due process presupposes justice. No amount of self-righteous rancor will change this. Objective law cannot be subordinated to the shifting aggregates of our sentiments, our grievances and our desires and proclivities.

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              • 24 May 2013 19:49, by Rommel

                If the accused is not afforded due process – the victim (s) does not get Justice. The victim is instead bequeathed with a grotesque deformity in its place. Is it somewhat therapeutic (at least ephemerally?) God Yes! I say that with an almost orgasmic affirmative. But is it Justice? The answer is most emphatically NO!!

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  • 24 May 2013 22:57, by Peace

    Developed economies are advancing democracy, freedom, liberty, human rights as God’s given gifts to Mankind. African rulers, who ascended power through questionable means, notwithstanding substantial helps from western democracies, do not want to account for their past. Bashir- SPLA War, Uhuru Kenyatta-Post Election Violence, Museveni-Northern Uganda, DRC. Give Justice a Chance! Up hold ICC!

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    Your blog provided us with valuable information to work with. Each & every tips of your post are awesome. hair extensions Thanks a lot for sharing.

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