SUDAN WATCH: Sudan Islamist opposition leader Hassan al-Turabi freed from prison in Port Sudan and flown home to Khartoum (Update 1)

Monday, March 09, 2009

Sudan Islamist opposition leader Hassan al-Turabi freed from prison in Port Sudan and flown home to Khartoum (Update 1)

[Update 1 = inserted article from Christian Science Monitor and Sudan Radio Service]

Sudan Islamist opposition leader, Hassan Al-Turabi, has been released from prison nearly two months after he was detained, his family says. Turabi was arrested by Security officers on January 14, 2009 two days after he urged Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir to surrender to the International Criminal Court (ICC).

In the 1990s when Sudan hosted al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, Mr Turabi was widely seen as the driving force behind Khartoum’s promotion of militant Islamist groups. Siddig said his father appeared in good health but had lost weight. Bashir Adam Rahman, secretary for international affairs in Mr Turabi’s party, was also released, Siddig said.

Source: Reuters report at Monday, March 9, 2009 - Sudan frees Islamist opposition leader
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Sudan frees Islamist opposition leader -- family
Reuters report dated Sunday March 8, 2009 9:19pm EDT:
KHARTOUM, March 9 (Reuters) - Sudan released an Islamist opposition leader on Monday, two months after he was detained for calling on Sudan's president to surrender to the International Criminal Court, his family said.

Hassan al-Turabi was freed from prison in Port Sudan and flown to his home in Khartoum in the early hours without any explanation, his son Siddig told Reuters.
See similar reports from BBC Monday, 9 March 2009 04:10 GMT (Sudan Islamist leader 'released') and Press TV Iran Monday, 9 March 2009 09:53:48 GMT (Sudanese opposition leader "freed")
Turabi freed from Port Sudan prison

Photo: Hassan Al-Turabi, the 77-year-old opposition chief had accused the president of being "politically culpable" for the crimes committed in the country's western region. He was a key ally of Al-Bashir until they split in a power struggle 10 years ago and is now the head of the Popular Congress Party and a vocal critic of Al-Bashir. He has been however, linked to the Islamist rebel Justice and Equality movement (JEM), an allegation he has denied.
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From the Christian Science Monitor, by Liam Stack (Cairo) Monday, 9 March 2009 - Turabi, influential Sudanese Islamist, freed from prison - excerpt:
Turabi is a major figure in Sudan, Africa’s largest country. He was once a key Bashir ally and seen as the spiritual force behind the 1989 coup that swept him to power.

During the 1990s, he was a leading advocate for the imposition of sharia, or Islamic law, in the multireligious country, spurring further conflict between the Muslim-dominated North and the largely Christian and animist South.

He was also a strong supporter of the presence of Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden in Sudan, which led to US airstrikes against that country following the 1998 terrorist bombings of US Embassies in Nairobi, Kenya and Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania.

Since then, Turabi and Bashir’s political partnership crumbled. Turabi’s outlook became more moderate, and he and Bashir have become fierce opponents. In January, Turabi was the only major Sudanese politician to call for Bashir to cooperate with the war-crimes tribunal, telling reporters:

“Politically we think he is culpable…. He should assume responsibility for whatever is happening in Darfur, displacement, burning all the villages, rapes, I mean systematic rapes, continuously, I mean on a wide scale and the killing,” according to Agence France-Presse.

His family kept up their criticism during his detention, with his wife, Wisal al-Mahdi, telling The Sudan Tribune that her husband had been detained because of “personal grudges.”

“There is no rule of law in this country,” she said. “He who has the power makes his own laws.”

Turabi was briefly detained last year following a daring attack on the Khartoum suburb of Omdurman by the Darfuri Islamist Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), which he has denied all links to.
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From Sudan Radio Service Monday, 9 March 2009:
(Khartoum) - The leader of the opposition Popular Congress Party, Doctor Hassan Al Turabi, has been released from prison, after two months in detention.

Sudan Security and National Intelligent Service released Dr. Turabi from prison in Port Sudan in the Red Sea State early on Monday morning and escorted him to his house in Menshiya in Khartoum.

Sudan Radio Service spoke to Turabi’s son, Siddiq Turabi, in Khartoum. He said that his father was released after being detained without charge.

[Siddiq Turabi]: “The National Security Act in Sudan gives the government the right to arrest and to release without giving any reasons. He was arrested following the statement he made regarding the ICC, as you know. His release came after lengthy political and individual communications. And after the reason why he was arrested no longer existed and because there are a lot of decisions that have been announced regarding the same issue. That’s why the reason to arrest him has become weak and that's maybe why the security agents decided to release him.”

The Popular Congress Party’s Secretary for Youth and Students, Yasser Abdalla Ibrahim told Sudan Radio Service in Khartoum on Monday that Doctor Turabi was released from detention following complaints by his family to the Khartoum authorities following a deterioration of Turabi’s health in prison.

Abdalla said Dr. Turabi will undergo intensive medical treatment after his release from detention. He ruled out any possibility of Dr. Turabi addressing a press conference soon due to his poor health.

Dr. Turabi was arrested on 15th January this year following a press statement to foreign media in which he said that President Omar al-Bashir was responsible for crimes against humanity in Darfur and that he should face the International Criminal Court in The Hague.

Turabi was detained briefly at Kobar prison in Khartoum-North and was later transferred to Port Sudan Prison in the Red Sea State, 700 kilometers from Khartoum.

Three days before the ICC announcement, rumours were circulating in Khartoum that Dr. Turabi had died in Port Sudan prison. Analysts said the rumours were a ploy to by unknown politicians to force the government to release Turabi.

At a press conference following the judges’ decision in The Hague last Wednesday, Vice President Ali Osman Taha told journalists that Turabi could be released from detention any time, if the authorities deemed it necessary to do so..
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Sudanese writer comments on Al-Turabi and Al-Bashir's "last dance"

According to Mohamed Hassan Bashir, the Sudanese author of an article reprinted here below, Al Turabi used to say of Sudan's President Omar Al Bashir that "Al Bashir is a gift from God to us". The article is telling of the Sudanese president:
"In the 1990s he submitted to the role of merely a token head of state, while his mentor Al Turabi was the real force behind the throne. But in the late 1990s he finally got fed up with the role of a front man. He wanted to lead and he has severed his ties with Al Turabi since then. To his credit, he has yet to develop the typical megalomaniac characteristics of his predecessor Ja'far Numayri, and other regional dictators. He does lack a natural leadership charisma, although he is described by his associates as an affable, humorous and laid-back kind of person, a "true Sudanese". Sometimes he can get very emotional, in his recent visit to the River Nile state a local woman offered him her child, the childless president lost control of his emotions and cried openly. [...]

As a reaction to the ICC in a rally last month in the state of Sinnar-South Eastern Sudan, he said, "I swear to God I will not surrender even a single cat from Sudan". Regarding the court ruling he said, "They can soak it in water and drink it". After each rally Al Bashir performs a customary dance, one of his favourite songs is a traditional Sudanese one whose lyrics go something like this: "They entered [the battlefield] and the vultures fly [over the enemy's dead bodies]". [...]

From his supporters' point of view, if you fast-forward 20 years, the accidental coup leader is now considered a national icon, a symbol of the country's sovereignty. The future and the destiny of the nation were linked with his fate, because he rules "through God's will".
Yesterday, a copy of the article plus 13 comments were forwarded to me in an email from someone I have not had contact with before. The author of the email is "deeply dismayed by the poorly-informed level of debate and the blizzard of propaganda from apologists and stooges for the National Islamic Front regime" and believes that the article "gives a bit more depth and accuracy to the current furore". The email ends by saying:
"Personally, I'll never forget the Khartoumers who told me in 1985 that the Darfuris arriving on their doorstep because of famine weren't Sudanese at all, but Chadian -the same racist spin they put on the South, the Nuba Mts, anywhere beyond their personal horizons. No surprise that they're demonstrating now. Plus ca change..."
Mohamed Hassan Bashir is a Sudanese based in Italy. Here is a copy of his article, in full, along with 13 comments posted at Sudan Tribune's website.  I have added red highlights for future reference.  Note, re the "Options" section of the article, my guess is: the third option - and that a way will be found to suspend the ICC proceedings against the Sudanese president, probably via the African Union that was formed (at great expense to the European Union and European taxpayers) in 2002 to provide "African solutions to African problems" (more on this in an upcoming post here at Sudan Watch).  It will be very interesting to see what happens next, and when, regarding the ICC's case against Darfur rebel leaders and those responsible for the horrific slaying of Darfur peacekeepers in Haskanita.  Going by what I have read, such attacks on peacekeepers are classed as a war crime.
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Text of commentary by Mohamed Hassan Bashir entitled "Fate, destiny and the last dance of Sudan's President" in English by Paris-based Sudanese newspaper Sudan Tribune website, 05 March 2009:

"Fate, destiny and the last dance of Sudan's President"

Ironical as it may seem, the original candidate to lead 1989's coup d'etat was another Brigadier named Uthman Ahmad Al-Hassan, because he was the leader of the Islamist group in the Sudan Armed Forces at the time. However, he was hastily replaced just a few days before the coup, because Uthman wanted the army to have complete control over political power in the country. Nevertheless the civilian plotters had second thoughts and they selected Umar Hassan al Bashir, considering him an easygoing officer who could be effortlessly controlled and manipulated.

Al Turabi used to say, "Al Bashir is a gift from God to us"

In ancient Aztec tradition the most handsome of the prisoners captured on the battlefield would be made king. Protected by guards and dressed in robes, his every need was satisfied for a whole year. Then the king was lead to the top of the temple pyramid. Here, stripped naked, he was stretched out on an altar, his torso was sliced open and his heart torn out and offered to the gods. This ritual celebrated the return of spring. These Aztec rituals now haunt the unfortunate second choice of the 1989 coup because little did he know that he would now be experiencing the pain that once was felt at the top of the temple pyramid. Following the ICC indictment, his soul has been sliced open for the entire world to see. In the Aztec case the King lost his life, in Sudan's case the leader has lost his soul and dignity.


The unknown 45-year-old coup leader delivered his first statement in 1989 to the Sudanese people and said: "the coup was to save the country from rotten political parties. Your armed forces have come to carry out a tremendous revolution for the sake of change after suffering that has included the deterioration of everything to the extent that your lives have become paralysed". The coup was also aimed at preventing the signing of a peace treaty with John Garang's Sudan People's Liberation Movement (SPLM) in July 1989. As a result the country paid a heavy price, a million died and more millions were displaced and uprooted.

Suffering had arrived in Sudan

Umar Hassan Al Bashir was born on January 1st 1944, in Hosh Banga, a small village on the banks of the river Nile located 80kms north of Khartoum. He went to primary school in Shandi, a nearby town, and then moved with his family to Khartoum and enrolled in a secondary school there. His father was a dairy farm worker in Kafori, north of Khartoum.

Hassan al Bashir struggled to feed his large family of eight boys and four girls, but working hard in his early days in Khartoum he eventually succeeded in educating his kids. His father was regarded as a follower of the Khatmiyya sect and a committed supporter of the Democratic Unionist party. However, Umar seems to have chosen a radically different path from his father's and he joined the Muslim Brothers organization at an early age, as did many of his siblings. Young Umar also seems to have been fascinated by the military and after graduating from secondary school he joined the Sudan Military Academy and graduated in 1967.

For a period he lead an uneventful life like most of his follow citizens, and progressed normally in different military posts, including military attache in the United Arab Emirates (1975-79), garrison commander (1979-81) and head of the armoured parachute brigade in Khartoum (1981-87). In 1987 he was appointed as a commander of the 8th brigade in South Kurdufan. But his fate was changed forever in late June 1989 when he was chosen to lead an Islamist backed military coup, since then his life would never be the same.

In the 1990s he submitted to the role of merely a token head of state, while his mentor Al Turabi was the real force behind the throne. But in the late 1990s he finally got fed up with the role of a front man. He wanted to lead and he has severed his ties with Al Turabi since then. To his credit, he has yet to develop the typical megalomaniac characteristics of his predecessor Ja'far Numayri, and other regional dictators. He does lack a natural leadership charisma, although he is described by his associates as an affable, humorous and laid-back kind of person, a "true Sudanese". Sometimes he can get very emotional, in his recent visit to the River Nile state a local woman offered him her child, the childless president lost control of his emotions and cried openly.

The dance

According to his press secretary Al Bashir has an unforgiving and short temper. In many public rallies he has frequently managed to embarrass his aids with unscripted outbursts. As a reaction to the ICC in a rally last month in the state of Sinnar-South Eastern Sudan, he said, "I swear to God I will not surrender even a single cat from Sudan". Regarding the court ruling he said, "They can soak it in water and drink it". After each rally Al Bashir performs a customary dance, one of his favourite songs is a traditional Sudanese one whose lyrics go something like this:

"They entered [the battlefield] and the vultures fly [over the enemy's dead bodies]". The words try to describe the horrible death of the enemy and how their bodies are left for the vultures to rip to pieces. The song conjures up a disturbing image, and if you have just been accused of war crimes and dance to such a tune, not many people will be able to distinguish between the image and the reality. There is something in the President's recent behaviour that almost makes you feel sorry for the guy. He looks like someone who has completely lost his composure. No one seems readily at hand to tell him, "Pull yourself together man!".

From his supporters' point of view, if you fast-forward 20 years, the accidental coup leader is now considered a national icon, a symbol of the country's sovereignty. The future and the destiny of the nation were linked with his fate, because he rules "through God's will". Of course, throughout human history and across cultures, rulers, monarchs, Kings and Queens have all claimed they are somehow supernaturally ordained - that they are "chosen by God to rule". Even in the USA a recent survey conducted in 2006 by Baylor University's Institute for Studies of Religion in Texas, found that 19% of Americans think that, "God favours the United States' international politics". The Shah of Iran claimed to be the Shadow of God on Earth - he was eventually deposed by the quintessential men of God. Now Al Bashir has become God's much loved being in Sudan... if you ever wondered what blasphemy means, then such an outlandish claim is the answer.

The options

Now the International Criminal Court has issued an arrest warrant for the Sudanese President for crimes against humanity and war crimes in Darfur - many observers have identified three possibilities:

Firstly: that a state of emergency may be declared; the UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) and the UN/African Union Hybrid Forces (UNAMID) may be expelled from Sudan; independent civil society organizations may be harassed; and the elections may be postponed while the regime declares a confrontation with the international community.

Secondly: the indictment of the president will weaken his position and will make him a liability to his own party. This may open the way for his removal in a palace coup d'etat.

Thirdly: "Nothing will happen on the Sudanese front", argued the moderate Islamist Al Tayyib Zayn Al Abidin in his article for Al Sahafah newspaper. He asserted that the government is far more pragmatic than people give it credit for. In his opinion the exaggerated claims that the government will react "impulsively" will not happen, anarchy will not engulf Darfur, the CPA implementation will continue. However, what will take place? "A few demonstrations here and there and it will die away in matter of days", says Zayn Al Abidin. "A normal life will return to Khartoum".

Many in Sudan share Zein Al Abdin's view, the government rhetoric is designed to achieve three things: (a) to appear militant in front of their local and regional followers, (b) to blackmail the international community that has invested heavily in the peace process in Sudan and, (c) to prevent the effect of the ICC ruling.

Peace and justice and arguments

On the international level many believe the government rhetoric; Julie Flint and Alex de Waal, warned the international community of the appalling consequences if an arrest warrant were issued against Al Bashir. Following the indictment of Slobodan Milosevic in 1999, Ian Black and Stephen Bates wrote an article in the Guardian on 28 May 1999 predicting that, "War crimes move dims peace hope". They also argued that, "Prospects for a negotiated solution to the Yugoslav conflict were thrown into doubt last night after Slobodan Milosevic was accused of murder". Many human rights activist also observed that, "There seems to be something approaching a universal rule that whenever a politician comes close to being charged with genocide or war crimes, someone somewhere will wring their hands and talk about the impracticality of it all, and the threat that this supposedly poses to 'peace'".

Many among the leaders of the NCP accept that crimes were committed in Darfur. Unfortunately, they have underestimated the seriousness of the international community's and Darfur victims' response to these crimes.

They have made countless diplomatic blunders that ended up in the ICC.
However, they are also aware of the hard realities of Sudanese and regional politics and they cannot afford to scare away the foreign investment that has been attracted to Sudan in the last five years. And they do not want to risk their own stake in the country's wealth. In short, they simply cannot afford anarchy in Sudan, let alone encourage it. And another reality, peace and justice are neither mutually exclusive nor sequential; they are more often inter-linked and simultaneous. Above all, impunity for the guilty is not an option that the victims of Darfur are willing or can afford to accept.

In retrospect

Now the naive Brigadier of 1989 is paying a high price for his role in an adventure written and composed by others. His own former mentor, Al Turabi, now cynically supporting his arrest. In retrospect, his mother was reported to have said in shock, following the news that her own son was the leader of the military coup in 1989, "What is wrong with my son Umar? This country is a river corpse [i.e. can not be resuscitated]". If he ever listened to her, maybe he would have had a different destiny.

But, wait a minute, if you're a gift from God then maybe there was nothing you could have done to change your fate in any case. 
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13 Comments posted at Sudan Tribune

5 March 2009 04:52, by Buk Dan Buk
That is what always happen to those who are being mislead by others. Now Mr Hassan Al Turabi is just chilling in his house watching the man he put into all this crises going through what he himself planned. Now I think Omar will defenitately learn from his mistake, he let himself being mislead by a curn man. Those protestors must understand they reasons why the warrant was issue. The must understand why the human right care about the Sudanese citizen, and must also know this warrant was not issue on politcal issues we always have among one another. This warrant was issue base on the facts we all know.
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5 March 2009 07:12, by Biden Osire
I use to say time will tell its course now reality has come why fear but let justice take its course, has predicted by many before and no one should interfer unless you are one of those who benefited from him too.
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5 March 2009 07:38, by Gatwech
Oh, man!
The D-Day has come for Al-Bashir. The decision has already been made. There is nothing the Sudanese can do than to cooperate with the court. There is no room for deferral of the case by the UN Security Council since US, France and UK are ready to vote such a move. Arab and African countries who sympathize with Bashir will just express their disappointment helplessly.

Well, well, well, Bashir from this day of issuance of arrest warrant is a wanted criminal by legal terms. It is like sending ordering a police to arrest a criminal. A criminal may dodge the police for sometime until he or she is apprehended. This is the situation Bashir finds himself in for the rest of his life if he is not quickly arrested or does not want to voluntarily handover himself to the ICC.

But his chances to be arrested are very high given the number of countries that are signatories to the Roman Statute. I was listening to the BBC this morning and the prosecutor, Ocampo was asked over his interview how the Court would arrest Bashir when many African and Arab countries are reluctant to arrest him. He plainly said that as long as Bashir travels outside of Sudan, his plane could be intercepted in international air space and diverted before it could land to where he wants to travel to. This is very serious!

Other implications will include cutting off Bashir from political or diplomatic dealings by many countries. For example, European Union countries automatically do not deal politically and diplomatically with a criminal suspect. Bashir is from now a wanted criminal and no body will want to deal with a police wanted criminal. Bashir will be like a fugitive and always on the run from those who want to arrest him. What a situation!

But the decision will not go without heavy price to be paid by the people of Sudan. The GoNU (Government of National Unity) of which Salva Kiir is the First Vice President has already decided to expell about ten major humanitarian agencies out of the country within 24 hours. These are the agencies helping significantly in providing medical and food supplies and services to the marginalized people in Sudan including the South and war affected IDPs such as in Darfur. This harsh decision will leave hundreds of thousands if not millions vulnerable to hunger and diseases.

Other implications are yet to surface. JEM rebels may start to launch attacks on the main government towns. Attempts of coup de tat against Bashir may occur in Khartoum. Bashir may sanction the South for supporting cooperation with ICC or international community, and may indefinately delay the release of South Sudan’s share of oil, or may encourage war in the South.

I have learned from a reliable source that Salva Kiir left Juba for Khartoum on Wednesday after the issuance of arrest warrnat of "Brother Al-Bashir" as he put it in the media. Well, we all know that Salva Kiir was appointed by Al-Bashir as Chairman of ICC crisis committee without consulting his party senior members. A thing which people say disappointed his party’s colleagues who did not want their chairman to be used in this kind of tricky matter. He went to Khartoum to meet Al-Bashir on what to do next in reaction to the ICC. May be the expelsion of humanitarian agencies is one solution to their meeting. Shame! But I at least appreciate is travel to Khartoum for the first time this year. I hope he will discuss the handover of Gen. Tang Ginye with Bashir and not concentrate on worshipping Bashir and condemning his arrest. He should stay in Khartoum for at least one week to do his work in the office of the First Vice President to defuse the growing tensions in the minds of his masters. But let no body forget that there is nothing one can do at this point to rescue the President. He is already a wanted criminal by law. He can be arrested any time and no matter how long it takes. He can be on the run for the rest of his life with sleepless nights. But he will be a useless President because he will not carry out his duty well if he confined to Sudan.
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5 March 2009 10:04, by David Deng Makuei Nhial
Hi Gatwec!
Your article of to day is fair in nature , but if you were Salva ,leave alone your hatracy against him what would you do in such crisis? His going to Khartoum doesn’t pertain any begging but should be there as a Vice President of the Republic, don’t take things half way ues a holistic part of your brain to interperate your ideas before releasing its. What is wrong by this time that making you changed your support to Criminal Bashir as you call him and along you have saying who will capture him.

The question of Tang Ginye is not the big issue that could take Salva to Khartoum, is just an easy case, where shall he escape in the Sudan here yet he do not know Arabic leave alone other languages.
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5 March 2009 21:52, by Peter Aarai
Mr Gatwech, D Day didnt come yet since your boyfriend omar bashir still in Sudan, you always against the ICC move that will affected CPA. bashir need be judged by Sudanese like his uncle Saddam Hussein. bashir have be hang in front Sudanese people in Sudan without any forgiveness.
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5 March 2009 12:55, by Agutran
I assume Sudan tribune now is under intimidation not to published people’s comments that support the ICC.
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5 March 2009 13:50, by Kuanlualthoun
Sudan El-Bashier is better 100x than those warlords before him!! unless he signed the CPA and lonnging for peace with Darfuur people! taking out of the equation will only make things worse! beware, Western are targeting him because he is not doing oil business with them!!
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5 March 2009 15:47, by 13012 Shepherd
I really enjoy the way these Wolves are betraying themselves.

Turabi appointed him as the leader of the successful coup de tat 20 years ago And the same Turabi has now poured 1000 0C hot water at him while resting at his conquered palace sending him chanting around in the city like a mad woman

That is interesting let them fight it over by themselves. Kiir Mayardit Keeps your hand off
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6 March 2009 01:56, by Mohammad100
Psychologist Dr. Sigman Fraud discussed a lot about rituals, dances, and nearly all human interaction giving each gesture’s interpretation psychoanalytically. I could not guess better than my former Sudanese psychology professors such as Prof. Malik Badri and the rest. If I go back to my classes in the University of Khartoum, I will be more than interested to ask one of those my former Psychology professors the plain interpretations of Omar Bashir’s current public dances in the face of his arrest warrant by the International Criminal Court. Is it a sadistic dance, is it masochistic dance, an arrogant dance, or a dance out of desperation?

The arrest warrant is real, the crimes he committed are real: many thousands of lives do practically testify. Even if he may presume that he is innocent, because neither Hitler, nor Joseph Starlin accepted they committed a crimes against humanity, but this time I do not know how Omar Bashir may escape his fate. Asalaam Aleikum, Mohammad.
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6 March 2009 06:38, by buokdeng
They call it ST. Vitus’s dance. Of course this is a specific neuropathology, but I am sure you talked about it in the class with your professor. He may not be having the condition that causes this dance, but you never know what his state of mind is at the present time. That is what I was reminded of when I saw him dance in a much uncoordinated way on the stage. I am sure something is going on in his head. So don’t be surprised if you see him acting the way he appeared on the stage. He is beginning to actually see the reality. Not too long ago Charles Taylor and Milosevic did not believe what they later on experienced---Jail time
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6 March 2009 01:38, by SudanSudan
Wow! I have applaused you brother Mohamed for your writing. You are a good Bashir and God bless you. Have you ever seen what a scared lion do when it’s about to be kill by hunters and die??? The dying lion become careless, obnoxious, and radical while began to cry like baby on fire. As a result, it aimed at the most BEAUTIFUL and POWERFUL WARRIOR among the crowds, whom he knocked down to the ground and bite him on the throat and NEVER let go again. Eventually the lion get killed and people moan for the most beautiful and powerful warrior whom the lion has killed. Omar Bashir is now on the path of a dying lion and you better watch CHA out for him. I advice the important people in Sudan who make no trouble watch out for their lives. The GOSS too MUST look out after their leaders, in case they lion slaughter them at the last minute and we cry again like in 1950s to 70s and in 2005.
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6 March 2009 10:49, by postmortem
Dear Mohammed Hassan Bashir, Thank you Mohammed for your objectivity. This is what all Sudanese want in analysing issues from the factual focal point. Sudan can move on to prosperity with this kind of thinking. God bless you.
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6 March 2009 12:38, by Gaaniko John
Brave man Mr. Mohamed Hassan Bashir. Thank you a lot for taking us to the background of The indicted Mr. ICC’s future client. I estimate those who trusted that man, committed a serious mistake that they are to confess as from now. Bashir can’t be considered as a gift from God to us as alleged by Mr. Turabi. Maybe he wanted to praise him when they were in good terms.
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SSDF calls for UNSC to postpone ICC proceedings against Sudan president

News from Sudan Radio Service 8 March 2009 (Khartoum):
The South Sudan Democratic Forum Party is calling on the United Nations’ Security Council to postpone the implementation of the arrest warrant against President Omar Al-Bashir in order to facilitate the peace process in Darfur.

In an interview with Sudan Radio Service in Khartoum on Saturday, the SSDF Secretary of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Stanslaus Wani Jada, said that though it is important to pressure GONU and the anti-government factions in Darfur in order to reach a comprehensive settlement to the Darfur problem, indicting the president will not solve the Darfur conflict.

[Stanslaus Wani Jada]: “The Security Council needs to put pressure to al-Bashir. Yes; they need to put pressure on the government at the moment so that the government takes more steps towards solving the problem of Darfur. The international community also needs to put pressure on the warring factions, particularly the JEM and Abdul-wahid’s SLA. They need to realize that war doesn’t solve the problem. Rather than trying to take drastic measures like trying to indict the president, I don’t see that indictment will solve the problem of Darfur at all. So, the Security Council should after issuing the warrant of arrest now at least take the step of postponing the implementation of the arrest so that it gives an opportunity for the president of the Sudan to solve the problem of Darfur.”

When asked to comment on the expulsion of sixteen humanitarian organizations by GONU, Dr Wani Jada urged the NGO’s to carry out their mandate without being involved in the country’s internal affairs.

[Stanslaus Wani Jada]: “One also has to respect the laws of the country because when a country is in a situation like in Sudan, you need to be very clear in respecting what the country is saying. You don’t need to be a double agent. So, humanitarian organizations need to be actually humanitarian. They need to concentrate on their humanitarian issues rather than mixing it with political issues.”

He said the absence of these international humanitarian NGOs will cause suffering to the people in Darfur and will also create unemployment. He said the NGO’s employed large numbers of Sudanese nationals.


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