28 March 2019

Sudan: Al Bashir Will Not Travel to Tunisia for Arab Summit

Khartoum — The Sudan delegation to the 30th League of Arab States summit in Tunisia next week, will be led by Sudan's First Vice-President and Defence Minister, Lt Gen Awad Ahmed Ibn Auf, and not Sudan's President Omar Al Bashir.

Sudan's Foreign Minister, Dr Dirdiri Mohamad Ahmad, made the announcement following a preparatory meeting of the permanent representatives and senior officials on Wednesday, preceded by a meeting of the League's Economic and Social Council at senior officials level.

The announcement comes following reports earlier this week, that the delegation would be headed by Al Bashir himself. This prompted international organisations including Human Rights Watch (HRW) to call on Tunisia to bar entry to or arrest Al Bashir, who is sought on two International Criminal Court (ICC) warrants for alleged genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity committed in Darfur, and Tunisia is a signatory to the Rome Convention under which the ICC operates.

"While some ICC members have allowed Al Bashir on their territory, others have avoided such visits under their obligation to cooperate with the ICC, including by relocating or rescheduling meetings or asking Sudan to send other representatives to meetings. ICC members should urge Tunisia to take such action," Human Rights Watch said.

Summit agenda

The official Sudan News Agency (SUNA) reports that the summit will discuss a number of issues including the Arab-Israeli conflict, the Israeli violations in the occupied regions, the developments in the Syrian crisis and the situation in Yemen and Libya.

The issue of support to the peace and development efforts in Sudan and Somalia will also be discussed.

Sudan is a member of the Ministerial Council Troika along with Somalia and Iraq.

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