Home | News    Thursday 12 May 2011

Sudanese president to skip Museveni’s inauguration

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May 11, 2011 (KHARTOUM) – The Sudanese president Omer Hassan Al-Bashir has delegated one of his advisers to attend the swearing-in of his Ugandan counterpart into a new term, the foreign ministry said on Wednesday.

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Sudanese president Omer Hassan Al-Bashir (Reuters)

Bashir was invited this week into the ceremony which is scheduled to take place on Thursday drawing criticism from human right groups.

"Presidential adviser Ahmed Bilal will represent him," foreign ministry spokesman Khaled Mussa told Agence France Presse (AFP), adding that Bashir was unable to travel to Kampala "due to precommitments".

The Sudanese leader is wanted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) on charges of genocide and war crimes he allegedly masterminded in Darfur. As a member of the ICC, Uganda has a legal obligation to apprehend Bashir and turn him over to the court omce he visits.

"Inviting an international criminal suspect to Uganda not only betrays the fight against impunity which Uganda has for long championed but also betrays the concerns and interests of the Victims of the most heinous crimes. Besides, inviting such an international criminal suspect wanted by the ICC makes a mockery of the swearing in ceremony which is supposed to be an historic event ushering in a democratic process" said a statement by HURINET – Uganda and the Uganda Coalition for the ICC.

"This action by Uganda portrays a systematic trend by some African States that have failed to cooperate with the Court. Bashir has recently visited Djibouti, Kenya and Chad. The ICC must nip in the bud such practice by invoking Article 87(7) of the Rome Statute and referring states like Djibouti and others to the Assembly of States Parties. Failure to do so will only promote greater violations of the Statute and this must be stopped".

Ugandan officials gave conflicting statements on whether Bashir confirmed attendance but stressed that he was invited as a matter of protocol. In the past Kampala would hand out invitations to Bashir while at the same time affirming their commitment to the ICC causing Bashir to stay away.

Earlier today, the head of ICC state parties reiterated the obligations by members of the Hague tribunal.

“What is important from my perspective,” Ambassador Christian Wenaweser told Voice of America (VOA), “is that a state party fully cooperates with the court. If the president of Sudan does not attend this event today, then we have no concern of cooperation,” he said.

“It will be difficult to not formally extend an invitation to any head of state,” Wenaweser added. “But as long as that invitation is accompanied by a message that that state also fulfills its obligation under the Rome Statute, that is sufficient.”

In a related issue, France and UK deplored Djibouti’s decision to receive Bashir last weekend despite being a state party. He was there for the inauguration ceremony of president Ismail Omar Guelleh.

"I am disappointed that Djibouti hosted President Bashir of Sudan last week in defiance of International Criminal Court arrest warrants for war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide" said UK minister for Africa Henry Bellingham in a statement.

"The British government expects the Government of Djibouti to stand by its obligations under the Rome Statute, and as a UN member state. The Government of Djibouti has committed itself to full cooperation with the ICC, and I reiterate the importance that the British government places on such commitments".

France on the other hand defended the presence of its international cooperation minister alongside with Bashir in Djibouti’s event.

"The presence of Al-Bashir was not known in advance.....The Minister for Cooperation had no contact with Al-Bashir" French Foreign Ministry spokesman Bernard Valero said.

French officials said that they, and their partners, had "undertaken steps" with Djibouti relative to that country’s obligations to arrest Al-Bashir in line with the Rome Statute that founded the ICC.

"We expect the States that are party to the Rome statutes to respect the decisions of the court," the French Foreign Ministry said.

"France resolutely supports the jurisdictional action of the Court and is attached to the full respect of the Rome statute," it added.

(ST)

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  • 12 May 2011 09:18, by Ariambek

    Dear readers,
    I told you……………… that 100% percentage Bashir would not attempt footstep to Uganda without being arrest and hand over to ICC for genocide and war crimes committed in Darfur. Addition, Bashir is supporting LRA to destabilize Uganda including other parts of Africa. Thank Bashir for canning to delegated, your days are numbering.

    Dr.Ariambek

    repondre message

  • 12 May 2011 09:58, by Niko

    Museveni the great butcher of the Acholi winner of the latest fraudulent election. Seems like perfect company for Cowboy Kiir not Bashir.

    repondre message

    • 12 May 2011 10:19, by Born to Achieve

      I knew it that albashir won’t make it to Ug.

      Think positive.
      Parise-FRANCE.

      repondre message

  • 12 May 2011 18:06, by Wed Nyanthiec

    ?????? ??????? ??? ??? ???? ??????? ???????? ????????? ?????? ?? ????? ?? ?????? ?????? ?????? ??????? ???????? ??????? ???? ?????.Listen

    repondre message

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