SUDAN WATCH: Darfur war criminals in Sudan must fear The Hague

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Darfur war criminals in Sudan must fear The Hague

Samantha Power has an op-ed on Darfur in New York Times Feb 12. Here is the closing paragraph:

Skeptics say that international courts will never deter determined warlords. Musa Hilal, the coordinator of the deadly Janjaweed militia in Darfur, gave me a very different impression when I met with him soon after the Bush administration had named him as a potential suspect. He had left Darfur and was living in Khartoum, courting journalists in the hopes of improving his reputation. Almost as soon as I sat down with him, he began his defense. Like his victims, he had only one place on his mind. "I do not belong at The Hague," he said. Surely Bush doesn't want to find himself on the side of someone his administration considers a killer.
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"My words are very clear in this regard. The war has its repercussions. The rebels started this war. They started burning and destroying many of the villages. They started destroying our villages first. - Musa Hilal, suspected Janjaweed leader - Janjaweed 'leader' denies genocide

Further reading at Jewels in the Jungle post titled "Sudan: PBS Frontline World & BBC Panorama programmes:
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Security Council alone to determine venue for Darfur trials: UN

12 Feb news via AFP:

UN spokesperson Radhia Achouri said today, "The designation of the court which will examine the cases of 51 persons mentioned in the report as having committed crimes in Darfur is the responsibility of the Security Council."

Photo: The spokesperson for the United Nations advance mission in the Sudan, Radhia Achouri. (AP)
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Kofi Annan travels from England to Germany

11 Feb UN news reveals the Secretary-General travelled to Germany after wrapping up his visit to England, UK.
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Sudan arranges to try Darfur "war crimes" in Sudan

To avoid facing a court outside of Sudan, Sudanese officials are making their own arrangements to try Darfur war crimes in Sudan. A news report Feb 12 via BBC says Sudanese Minister of State Al-Tijani Salih Fudail [acting for Sudan's Foreign Minister Ismail who should be on UN's sealed list of wanted war criminals] asked the international community to give Sudan the opportunity to resolve the Darfur problem within the competencies given to the Sudanese first vice-president [also should be on UN list] who said that he had already started doing some thing about it.
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Sudan's FM to meet French counterpart tonight

Yesterday it was reported that Sudanese Foreign Minister Ismail stopped off in London "on his way home" from New York following a UN Security Council attended by Garang and Taha.

Tonight, Saturday Feb 12, he is in Paris, meeting with his French counterpart, M. Barnier. Note, Ismail requested the meeting.

Photo: French Foreign Minister M. Barnier
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UK envoy to Sudan calls for talks to end conflict in east

11 Feb news via BBC Monitoring Service says British ambassador to Sudan, William Patey, has said that it is necessary for the government and the Beja Congress to hold talks in order to solve the problem in the east.

During a press conference yesterday Ambassador Patey affirmed the British government's commitment to help in resolving the Sudanese conflicts.

He said: "We want peace both in the east and west. We would like to tell the Beja Congress that talks are the way to solve the problem in the east, and that our message to the government is to start peaceful negotiations."

He pointed out that there were friends who could help in solving the crisis and bringing peace everywhere in Sudan. He also says that Britain's role is to give assistance.

"Britain's role is to give assistance to solve the cease-fire and renounce violence," he said.

He affirmed that agreement with the south would help in solving all the problems in both the east and west.

Photo: UK Ambassador to Sudan William Patey

Further reading:

12 Feb news via BBC: Sudanese opposition alliance approves Cairo agreement. The meetings also approved the Beja Congress and the Free Lions organizations as the official representatives of eastern Sudan, and the legality of the two organizations, as well as the SLM.

12 Feb news via BBC: Opposition alliance to withdraw its forces from east Sudan. An agreement has been reached on the withdrawal of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) forces from Al-Qiran town in Hamashkoreb area following a political settlement on the dossier of the eastern region. The NDA leader has held talks with the Eritrean President to discuss how to eliminate the political tension between Khartoum and Asmara. During the meeting, the sources say, President Afewerki expressed his anger over Khartoum government for hosting the summit of the Eritrean factions opposed to the his regime, which was held in Khartoum recently.

Photo: Eritrean president Isaias Afwerki (R) receives the Chairman of the Sudanese opposition National Democratic Alliance (NDA), Mohamed Osman al-Mirghani in his office, on Friday, February 4, 2005. (ERINA).
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John Garang: A Conversation on Sudan

12 Feb John Garang, who for two decades led the People's Liberation Movement in southern Sudan, will soon be vice president in a new Sudanese government of national unity. He says he hopes the new government will be able to end the widespread human rights abuses in the Darfur region of Sudan.

Click here at NPR to listen to a full, 37 minute interview.

Photo: John Garang speaks after the United Nations Security Council met in New York on Feb. 8.

12 Feb Arabic News news says there may be a Sudanese Central Bank branch in the south this month.

12 Feb Sudan Tribune news via SUNA says the European Union (EU) has allocated 30 million euros for boosting the basic education in Sudan toward enforcing the recently signed peace agreement between the Government of Sudan (GOS) and the SPLM. The federal Minister of Education, Ahmed Babiker Nahar, made this declaration, after receiving an EU work team for educational support programmes.


Blogger Black River Eagle said...

I just wanted to check-in briefly today in regards to the debate: The ICC in the Hague vs. N-F-W in the Hague.

Samantha Power does make some good points in her Op-Ed piece in the NY Times article re: the ICC vs. an indepedent court being setup in Arusha, Tanzania. I personally respect the excellent work she has done in the aftermath of the Rwandan Genocide and now with the almost completed genocide of black African tribes in Darfur enough to listen very carefully to anything she has to say on the subject.

Eric Reeves of Smith College has made an even better argument in his latest article at the site, and that is 1st stop the killing and THEN workout the details of how and where court trials should be held.

As far as the U.N. Security Council and other U.N. agencies and envoys or whatever are concerned, they have long ago lost any legitimacy in the conflict in Darfur and in Sudan as a whole, not to mention Rwanda and other hotspots of human suffering around the globe.

Let's look at some simple arithmetic in re: to the U.N.'s infamous secret list of "51 names" contained in their latest Darfur report. Power, Reeves, and many others estimate the number of dead and dying in the Darfur region since February 2003 to be at around 400,000 people (and rising). The United Nations is still working with numbers of around 70,000 but who would be fool enough to believe that B.S.?

Now when you divide the 400,000 number by 51 you end up with a total of 7843 deaths per accused, mainly women and children mind you (the dead I mean).

Now that's a lot of killing per man or boy (child soldiers) on the average. That's a real killing machine when you consider the Janjaweed militias probably aren't using gas chambers, chemical and bio-weapons, and furnaces and stuff like that. Of course if you have Russian-built and Chinese-built military hardware (+ trainers and advisors) in the hands of the Sudanese military and police blended in amongst the nortorius Arab militias, you can kill a lot of people pretty fast and with high efficiency levels.

I think I have seen a number in regards to the accused awaiting trial for the Rwandan Genocide of about 90,000 (waiting in prisons 10 years on, mind you). Now if you again take the high number of about 800,000 Rwandans dead and divide that by 90,000 you have a total of about 9 deaths per man/woman/child (the killers). Now that number of 9 people killed per murderer is a bit more plausible to me than the track the U.N. is trying to follow and to sell to the world community in regards to Darfur, if you can follow my thinking here.

And then there is the matter of convictions and sentencing of the guilty at the ICC in the Hague. I've seen convicted mass murderers there get sentences of less than 8 years in a plush, modern jail located in the heart of Europe. The genocide masterminds of the Balkans (i.e. Milosovec) can't even get convicted there, at least not yet.

Explain to that poor, traumatized, sexually and psychologically violated young mother in Darfur that the murderers of her child (thrown alive into a fire), the murderers of her family and entire village, damn near her entire people... that these dispicable killers will face justice before an international court and that their average punishment will be 8 years or less in jail...after which time they can return home to kill and rape again in Darfur.

How can we in the so-called developed world, the civilized world, call ourselves "delivering justice" to these suffering people when those very same systems of law and justice fail us everyday?

Sunday, February 13, 2005  

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