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First Sudanese government suspect to face ICC judges for Darfur crimes

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June 9, 2020 (KHARTOUM) - The International Criminal Court (ICC) confirmed on Tuesday that one of the first Darfur war crimes suspects was in their custody after days of intense rumors.

Ali Kushayb

The ICC revealed that Ali Kushayb who is described as one of the leaders of the notorious Janjaweed militias, which operated in Darfur, surrendered voluntarily in the Central African Republic (CAR).

"ICC Registrar Mr Peter Lewis thanked the Minister of Justice Flavien M’Bata and the authorities of the Central African Republic, the French Republic, the Republic of Chad, as well as the leaders of the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA) and the authorities of the host State, the Netherlands, for their support to the Court and cooperation in the arrest, surrender and transfer of Mr. Kushayb to the Court".

Kushayb is charged with 22 counts of crimes against humanity and 28 counts of war crimes during the government’s Darfur counterinsurgency campaign in 2003-2004.

The arrest warrant against him was issued in 2007.

There was no reaction from the Sudanese government which has former president Omer Hassan al-Bashir, Ahmed HariubA

The US-based Human Rights Watch (HRW) welcomed Kushayb’s arrest.

“Today is a landmark day for justice for victims of atrocities committed across Darfur and their families,” said Elise Keppler, associate director of the group’s International Justice Program.

“The world watched in horror as Sudan’s government carried out brutal attacks on Darfur civilians, killing, raping, burning and looting villages, starting in 2003. But after 13 years, justice has finally caught up with one major fugitive of the crimes.

(ST)

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