ICC prosecutor urges arrest of Sudan war crimes suspects

[JURIST] International Criminal Court (ICC) [official website] chief prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo [official profile] is pushing world leaders to place the prosecution of war crimes in the Darfur region of Sudan on top of the agenda [press release] at a UN meeting on Darfur taking place Friday. In a press briefing before the meeting, Moreno-Ocampo said that peace in Sudan is impossible if alleged war criminals remain free, including Sudanese Minister of State for Humanitarian Affairs Ahmed Muhammad Harun [Trial Watch profile], who faces charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity. Last month, Moreno-Ocampo criticized Sudan [JURIST report] for allowing Harun to remain the humanitarian minister and failing to arrest Harun after international authorities issued an arrest warrant [arrest warrant, PDF] earlier this year. Sudanese Ambassador to the UN Abdalmahmood Abdalhaleem Mohamad has said that Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir refuses to surrender any Sudanese citizens for prosecution in foreign courts, claiming that Sudan must prosecute any criminals if necessary. Moreno-Ocampo has previously threatened to report [JURIST report] Sudan's failure to arrest war crimes suspects to the UN Security Council [official website].

At his press briefing Thursday, Moreno-Ocampo told world leaders that "there can be no political solution, no security solution, and no humanitarian solution" as long as alleged war criminals stay free in Sudan, urging world leaders to "break the silence." Sudan has previously responded to calls from the ICC chief prosecutor for the arrest of Sudanese war crime suspects by saying that the ICC does not have the jurisdiction [JURIST reports] to prosecute alleged war crimes in Darfur because Sudan has not ratified the ICC's Rome Statute [PDF text]. AP has more.



 

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