Friday, July 10, 2009

Ugandan gov't defends AU position on Bashir ICC indictment

From Uganda Pulse, Friday, 10 July 2009:
Uganda Government News: Uganda defends AU position on Bashir ICC indictment
By Zacharia Tiberindwa, Ultimate Media
The government has defended the position taken by the Assembly of African Heads of States and governments in Sirte, Libya that no African country in the African Union should assist the International Criminal Court in the arrest of Sudan President, Omar El Bashir whom ICC has indicted for several offences.

This comes amidst mixed reactions over the decision African Union leaders made on the indictment of Bashir and follows earlier mixed reactions over ICC’s decision to indict Bashir when he is still a serving president of Sudan.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sam Kuteesa has told journalists in Kampala that the decision African leaders made has been viewed by many people as a manifestation of lack of respect and support for the ICC Rome Statute by African leaders.

Kuteesa however says what the African countries want is for the ICC to defer the indictment of Bashir for 12 months like the African Union requested in February 2009.

He says this is to allow African countries to investigate further on Bashir’s case such that they can give their recommendations on his indictment.

Kuteesa says all these leaders are in support of the ICC Statute which led to the establishment of ICC, He says that their decision is in not a way of denying their support to the Rome Statute because the African countries were party to the making of the statute.

Kuteesa says the African countries are still committed to combating impunity, promoting democracy, rule of law and good governance in the same spirit of the Rome Statute like the ICC and not otherwise like it has been imagined.

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