14 December 2012

Sudan: ICC Charges - Displaced Ask Commitment From Security Council

Darfur / Chad — Displaced persons and refugees living in camps in eastern Chad have expressed their support for the report the International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutor recently submitted to the UN Security Council (UNSC).

In this report, prosecutor Fatou Bensouda announced she may include new war crimes charges against Sudanese officials over the conflict in Darfur.

Speaking to Radio Dabanga, on Friday, 14 December, displaced and refugees described the report as "honest". They stated it "truly reflects" what has happened and what is still happening on the ground in Darfur concerning crimes reportedly committed by the government and its militias in the region.

The suspects wanted by the Court are: President Omar al-Bashir; Minister of Defense Abdel Rahim Mohammed Hussein; Governor of South Kordofan Ahmed Haroun; and Janjaweed leader Ali Muhammad Al Abd-Al-Rahman, known as Ali Kushayb.

"Strongly criticize" the UNSC

Omda Ahmed Ateem Osman, office member of the displaced persons and refugees and coordinator of camps in North Darfur, said that refugees and displaced strongly criticize the UNSC for its lack of action in reacting to the arrest warrants issued by the Court.

They believe that the lack of implementation of the 16 UNSC resolutions on Darfur, including its decision to refer the files to the Court, underestimate the Council's value, the omda declared.

In addition, the Council's lack of response to requests by the ICC to arrest the suspected criminals has encouraged the government to commit more crimes in Darfur, Osman declared.

This has also led the government to expand its activities beyond Darfur, namely to Blue Nila and Nuba Mountains, he concluded.

On their turn, students have issued a binding resolution demanding the arrest of President Omar al-Bashir and that the director the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) also be included in the warrant.

They also called for the Council to stop supporting fragile and partial agreements on Darfur, indicating the Abuja and Doha Documents, and work towards comprehensive solutions for the issues in Sudan.

"Disappointment and dissatisfaction"

In eastern Chad, refugees expressed their "disappointment and dissatisfaction" concerning the failure of the UNSC to take any action regarding the arrest warrants issued by the ICC, according to what sheikh Ali Yaqoub, from camp Bredjing told Radio Dabanga.

Sheikh Yaqoub said the refugees are upset by the lack of interest of the UNSC in arresting the criminals suspected of committing crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes against innocent civilians in Darfur, Nuba Mountains and Blue Nile.

He stressed that the main demand of the refugees is that the accused are arrested and that the Council shows support to the ICC.

They also demanded that members of the international community, especially the USA and France, solve the problems in Darfur with the same enthusiasm they showed in Libya and other countries.

Bringing these people to the Court means justice, which in turn means the return of security and stability and that they can return to their homes in Darfur, the sheikh stated.

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