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ICC prosecutor renews calls to hand over Sudan’s al-Bashir, former officials


June 9, 2020 (KHARTOUM) - Pleased by the surrender of a militia leader to The Hague-based court, the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) renewed calls to Sudanese authorities on Tuesday to hand over or prosecute all the former officials indicted for alleged war crimes in Darfur.

Fatou Bensouda, Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), briefs the Security Council at a meeting on the situation in Darfur (UN Photo)Fatou Bensouda made a regular briefing to the Security Council about the investigations on Darfur crimes on Tuesday 9 June which coincided with the arrival of Ali Kushayb, a Sudanese militia leader to the ICC custody in The Hague as he surrendered himself several days ago in the Central African Republic.

“I also seize this occasion to reiterate my call on Sudan’s authorities to ensure tangible justice for the victims in Darfur without undue delay,” Bensouda said referring to her first call to the Transitional Military Council on 19 June 2019 two months after the al-Bashir ouster.

“All the (...) remaining arrest warrants in the Darfur situation, against Messrs Omer Al Bashir, Abdel Raheem Hussein, Ahmad Harun and Abdallah Banda, remain in force. As such, the Government of Sudan remains under a legal obligation to transfer the four remaining suspects to the Court to stand trial,” she added.

Recalling the principle of complementarily, the general prosecutor further underscored that Sudan can demonstrate to the Judges of the Court that it is “genuinely investigating and prosecuting the four remaining suspects for substantially the same criminal conduct alleged in their respective ICC arrest warrants”.

The position of the Sudanese transitional authorities was unclear during the past year as the head of the Sovereign Council Abdel Fattah al-Burhan was voiced his opposition to the handover of the detained former officials before to accept it but nothing has been done in this respect.

Bensouda stressed its readiness for dialogue with the Sudanese government and pledged to continue donning everything in my power under the Rome Statute to secure justice for the victims in the Darfur situation.

“Ending impunity for atrocity crimes is also essential to achieve durable peace and security in Darfur,” she said.

Last month, Abdalla Banda a former commander of the Justice and Equality Movement declared joining an alliance led by the SLM of Minni Minnawi but he is not part of a peace process mediated by the South Sudanese government to end Darfur conflict.

Al-Bashir, Harun and Hussein are jailed in Kober prison in Khartoum North.


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