SUDAN WATCH: ICC to rule March 4 on arrest warrant for President Omar Al Bashir of Sudan

Monday, February 23, 2009

ICC to rule March 4 on arrest warrant for President Omar Al Bashir of Sudan

From International Criminal Court (ICC) Press Release: 23.02.2009:
Decision of Pre-Trial Chamber concerning President Al Bashir of Sudan to be issued on Wednesday 4 March 2009
Situation: Darfur, Sudan

Today Pre-Trial Chamber I announced that it would issue on Wednesday 4 March 2009 its decision concerning the Prosecution application of 14 July 2008 for the issuance of a warrant of arrest against President Omar Al Bashir of Sudan.

The decision will be made public by the normal way of a press release and publication on the Court’s website.

23-02-2009 – Public notice of the Decision on the Prosecution’s Application under Article 58 of the Statute [Excerpt: CONSIDERING that there have been numerous rumors over the past weeks on a possible date and outcome of the decision that this Chamber shall issue on the Prosecution Application; that the Chamber is deeply concerned about such rumors; and that it will publicly issue the said decision on the date set out in the present decision.]

Prosecution’s Application under Article 58

For further information please contact Ms Laurence Blairon, Spokesperson, at +31 (0)70 515 87 14 or +31 (0) 6 46 44 88 89 or at
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From Associated Press by Mike Corder 23 February 2009 - excerpt:
Int'l court to decide on Darfur warrant
THE HAGUE, Netherlands — Judges at the International Criminal Court said Monday they will announce next week whether they will order the arrest of Sudan's president on charges including genocide and crimes against humanity in Darfur.

Prosecutors at the world's first permanent war crimes tribunal asked last July for a warrant, accusing Omar al-Bashir of masterminding a campaign of murder, torture and rape by government troops and Arab militias in the Darfur region.

The president would be the first sitting head of state ordered arrested by the court.

But even if the judges issue a warrant on any or all of the 10 charges in their ruling March 4, it remains unlikely al-Bashir will be sent to the court's headquarters in The Hague any time soon. Sudan does not recognize the court's jurisdiction and refuses to hand over suspects.

It is unusual for judges to announce when they plan to publicize such a decision — but they have never previously tackled such a high-profile case since the court started work in 2002.

In a written statement, the three judges on the panel said they announced the date because they were "deeply concerned" at rumors about their decision.
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From BBC 23 February 2003 - excerpt:
Arrest ruling on Bashir next week
Meanwhile Mr Bashir on Monday returned from a visit to Cairo, where he held talks with his Egyptian counterpart Hosni Mubarak.

Egypt warned that an ICC arrest warrant would lead to dangerous repercussions in Darfur and the rest of the country.

It called for a decision to be deferred for at least a year.
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In order to give peace a chance, here's hoping that the UN Security Council will use its power to suspend any arrest warrant that may be issued by the ICC. Note that there has been no news of any arrest warrants being issued for Darfur rebels responsible for the slaying of Darfur peacekeepers at Haskanita.


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