Justice and Peace in Sudan
In a welcome step, today the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court requested an arrest warrant for Sudanese President Omar Al-Bashir on charges of genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes in Darfur.
In a report released today, ENOUGH Executive Director John Norris, Co-Chair John Prendergast, and Research Associate David Sullivan argue that the call to arrest Bashir is not only based on sound evidence, but that it can be a step forward in the path to secure peace. “The status quo in Sudan is one of the deadliest in the world. Until there is a consequence for the commission of genocide, it will continue. This action introduces a cost, finally, into the equation,” says Prendergast. Using examples of past indictments of war criminals Slobodan Milosevic during the 1999 Kosovo conflict, and of Charles Taylor in 2003 in Liberia, the report argues that introducing accountability for crimes against humanity can break the cycle of impunity and improve prospects for peace in seemingly intractable conflicts. Norris notes “with more than 300,000 dead and millions displaced in Darfur, it is shocking that these charges are even remotely controversial. President Bashir has orchestrated the Darfur tragedy from day one, and any efforts to sweep his actions under the rug are both shameful and counterproductive.”
Read the report here.
In a separate release, ENOUGH provides a rundown of some of Bashir’s past comments and behavior. From hosting Osama bin Laden to engineering a famine in southern Sudan that killed hundreds of thousands, Bashir’s criminal track record extends well beyond Darfur, and leaves little question as to why the prosecutor is moving forward with charges.