SUDAN WATCH: Why the ICC Leak?

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Why the ICC Leak?

From UN Dispatch: Notes on UN
By Mark Leon Goldberg, February 12, 2009
Why the ICC Leak?
I woke this morning to find an email from the International Criminal Court's press shop vigorously denying that ICC judges had made a decision to issue the arrest warrant for Sudanese president Omar al Bashir. If the ICC is not ready to make the announcement regarding Bashir, why would officials at the United Nations -- who were the sources for the New York Times scoop--reveal this info?

The UN is pretty leaky place in general. Hundreds of member states have hundreds of different agendas, which sometimes differ from the UN secretariat. There is a very real chance that a diplomat in the know couldn't hold his or her tongue. But, it's also no secret that a number of UN officials are frustrated with the ICC's pursuit of Bashir--not on principal, but because UN officials worry that the arrest warrant could disrupt peace efforts and result in attacks on UN personnel in Sudan.

Don't get me wrong, as a blogger and journalist I'm very pro-leak. I'm just curious as to why "officials at the UN" (which could mean secretariat staff or member state diplomats) would want to jump the gun on this?

UPDATE: On further reading, it seems that the NYT item that broke this story was datelined The Hague, not United Nations. This would suggest that the leak came from ICC, not UN sources, which adds another layer of intrigue.
From what I have gathered here at Sudan Watch, Sudan Tribune appears to be the first to get a leak. To keep an eye on dissemination of misinformation, I've documented several reports on it here at Sudan Watch over past few days. Scroll through past week of posts and see.

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