SUDAN WATCH: Paul Moorcraft says ICC Bashir arrest warrant will undermine Sudan's CPA, peace must come before justice

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Paul Moorcraft says ICC Bashir arrest warrant will undermine Sudan's CPA, peace must come before justice

Paul Moorcraft says the ICC Bashir arrest warrant will undermine Sudan's Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA). Peace must come before justice. The Doha talks between JEM and NCP were about to succeed but were more or less sabotaged by the ICC's decision to issue an arrest warrant.

From Sudan Radio Service 17 June 2009 (Nairobi/London):
Arrest Warrant Will Undermine the CPA Says UK Analyst
As debate over the arrest warrant issued against President al-Bashir by the International Criminal Court continues, a foreign political analyst thinks that the warrant will undermine the implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement.

The Director of the UK-based Centre for Foreign Policy Analysis, Professor Paul Moorcraft, told Sudan Radio Service on Tuesday that peace must come before justice because arresting Bashir at this time will destroy the CPA as well as complicate the peace process in Darfur. He added that both parties have committed atrocities in the region.

[Professor Paul Moorcraft]:“I don’t particularly like President al-Bashir but my main argument is that the ICC arrest warrant is more likely to end up ensuring that al-Bashir stays in power for life. But it also puts pressure on the CPA. You could argue that the president says he is innocent, well, he should go to The Hague, but we know he is unlikely to do that. There is no doubt that a lot of atrocities were committed by the Sudanese Army in Darfur, just as today, the JEM and the rebel elements of the SLA are also committing awful atrocities, especially against workers in the NGOs who are trying to feed the Darfur people. So, yes there are crimes on both sides but at the moment what am saying is in short, peace must come before justice. It is great to have both and maybe they will come in time, but what matters is bringing peace to Darfur, end the suffering and not to undermine the north-south agreement and that’s what I fear the ICC will bring. Peace before justice.

Professor Moorcraft also doubts that an African Union court would resolve the Darfur conflict.

[Professor Paul Moorcraft]: “Africa doesn’t have a good record, the African Union is full of dictatorships, but there is no simple solution. As long as African states are badly governed there will be no easy solution to get rid of presidents-for-life”.

He said that the imposition of European standards in solving African issues can be disastrous, adding that only a political solution can end the Darfur conflict.

[Professor Paul Moorcraft]:“I think sometimes when there is western intervention it can cause negative consequences in Africa. So, political investment is good, political investment like in Naivasha, repeating itself in Darfur. But I have doubts about the intent to impose European standards. Remember, very few - only 27 percent - of the world has signed up to the ICC. it is not an International Court of Justice, many countries have not joined and at the moment virtually all those who have been indicted have been African leaders, it seems to me that that smacks a little of colonialism.”

Professor Moorcroft added that the Doha talks between the Justice and Equality Movement and the National Congress Party were about to succeed but that they were more or less sabotaged by the ICC decision to issue President al-Bashir with an arrest warrant.
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Analyst forecasts change in US Policy towards Sudan

June 17, 2009 report from Sudan Radio Service (Nairobi/Paris) - excerpt:
On Monday, the GONU Foreign Affairs Minister Deng Alor said he expects the United States government to ease economic sanctions and to remove Sudan from the list of states which sponsor terrorism. Roland Marchal, a Paris-based political analyst, suggests that the Obama administration could reverse its policies towards Sudan. He spoke to Sudan Radio Service on Wednesday.  Full story.

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