Friday, February 13, 2009

Embassy of The Republic of the Sudan: ICC Prosecutor Threatens Peace in Sudan

Statement from Embassy of The Republic of the Sudan:
ICC Prosecutor Threatens Peace in Sudan
WASHINGTON, Feb. 12, 2009 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --

The following was released today by the Embassy of The Republic of the Sudan, Washington:
In yet another vivid demonstration of the true inspiration behind the Prosecutor's actions, the anticipated issuance of an arrest warrant for President al-Bashir, is preempted by a dubious announcement through the media. New York Times reported on Wednesday evening that some anonymous United Nations' officials confirmed to the Secretary General Ban Ki Moon the approval of an arrest warrant by the judges who allegedly would make an official announcement shortly. If in fact such an announcement is imminent, it's a proceeding that requires a degree of care and some level of professionalism from a prosecutor. It is rather embarrassing for the Court, that it had to release a statement this morning denying having reached a decision let alone issuing an arrest warrant. Still the NYT has disseminated the story again this morning and has widely been reproduced by other media outlets.

This incident is reminiscent of Ocampo's behavior when he initially made his intentions to charge the President public. He first leaked the information to the media and soon after embarked on a political campaign that continues to this day, touring city to city from one country to the next in a desperate bid to elevate his profile internationally. And of course this is all done at the expense of our people in Darfur whose suffering should be the focus of the world, but attention on their plight was suddenly eclipsed and quickly receded into the shadows while spotlight was diverted by the man whose irresponsible actions have only exacerbated their miserable conditions.

It is to be noted that Ocampo and those pulling his strings are fully cognizant of the implications of such a motion and the grave threat it poses to the peace and security of the country. To verify this fact does not require expertise on the matter, the evidence, since the prosecutor concocted the charges in July of 2008 abounds. Violence in Darfur (killing of civilians, attacks on Humanitarian aid workers, ambushes, killing of peacekeepers, attacks on cities) escalated dramatically as the perpetrators of those egregious crimes saw an ally in Ocampo. He ensured their immunity from international scorn as the Government invariably received the blame for all incidents including instances where it was protecting its civilians. He would consolidate impunity for the rebels.

Yet perhaps even more poignant is the timing of this leak. Sudan is at a pivotal moment as the Government and the Rebels began discussions just a day ago. The hopes of all the people of Sudan are pinned on these talks, which have rightly received international support. However, it is clear now that the Prosecutors latest stunt will severely undermine these hopes as the rebels will undoubtedly begin to consider recourse to violence because this indictment is, to them, a green light to continue their atrocities and abandon peace talks. This is an incident preceded by a series of others where the pattern of sabotaging efforts at the decisive moments has been noted. It must be made clear that the Sudanese will hold Ocampo accountable for the fate that may befall them as a consequence of his reckless actions.

Sudan also regrets deeply the deplorable posture assumed by some members of the United Nations Security Council who, in clear grasp of what such a move portends for the peace and security of the country, choose political games in the face of an existential threat to millions of lives. We call on the world to denounce and reprimand the prosecutor for worsening the conditions of an already besieged people who need nothing else but peace. The African Union has made its position clear and does not wish to be the victim or the guinea pig of the ICC. And the Arab League has also voiced its concerns about a court that has already botched its first case against an alleged Congolese warlord. We call on the Security Council to heed to the calls of the vast majority of the world that demands the dismissal of these dubious charges and help with the efforts of peace building in Darfur.

SOURCE Embassy of the Republic of the Sudan

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