The Islamic Post Blog

Arab World ‘Not Too Amused’ Over Bashir Indictment by Khalida
August 17, 2008, 2:37 pm
Filed under: August Volume 1 - 2008, International, World | Tags: , , ,

By Abu Aasim, Islamic Post Staff Writer

Sudanese President, Omar Al-Bashir. (AFP/Getty Images)

Sudanese President, Omar Al-Bashir. (AFP/Getty Images)

Sudanese President Omar Al-Bashir, who was recently indicted by chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), Luis Moreno-Ocampo, for war crimes in the western Sudanese region of Darfur, has appeared outraged along with much of the Arab world.

Al-Bashir and others who condemn the indictment filed by Moreno-Ocampo last month, have called the accusations politically motivated.

This is the first time the ICC has sought to prosecute a sitting head of state.

Charges against Al-Bashir include genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity.
The accusations triggered a sharp reaction from Sudan where the government stated that it could no longer “guarantee the safety” of UN peacekeepers in Darfur, according to the Egyptian weekly Al-Ahram.
The Arab League has also been less than amused by the ICC’s actions; its secretary general Amr Moussa called an emergency meeting in Cairo. Djibouti’s Foreign Minister Mahmud Ali Yousef presided over the meeting and the passing of a resolution which condemned Moreno-Ocampo’s stance as “unbalanced.”
Concern over the precedent that could be set by the indictment, Yousef expressed his grave concern over the situation. “The indictment sets a dangerous precedent in dealing with heads of state. It will have dangerous repercussions, not only for Sudan but also for the whole region,” said Youssef, according to Arab News Daily. Many in the region perceive the recent events as political as opposed to humanitarian. They believe the fact that the ICC has yet to have a successful prosecution has driven its prosecutor to attack someone, Al-Bashir, who is unpopular with western powers and therefore easy to convict.

The Sudanese president however is looking to his own allies in China and Russia to influence the UN Security Council to block the indictment.


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