Bashir to visit Chad despite arrest warrant

Published on Reuters Africa, by Opheera McDoom, July 21, 2010.

KHARTOUM (Reuters) – Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir will travel to Chad on Wednesday, presidential sources said, his first visit to a member state of the court demanding his arrest for war crimes and genocide.

The International Criminal Court (ICC) issued an arrest warrant in 2009 for Bashir to face charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity in the Darfur region.

Last week the court, which Bashir refuses to recognise, added three counts of genocide to the list of charges. 

“He will go to Chad tomorrow,” a presidential source told Reuters on Tuesday. “He will attend the summit of the Sahel-Saharan states,” the source added. Another source in the presidency said the visit would last three days.

A Chadian rebel and a Sudanese official told Reuters that Khartoum had expelled Mahamat Nouri and Timan Erdimi, two of the most prominent Chadian insurgent leaders living in Sudan, a move seen as a concession before the trip … (full text).

Links:

China holds off condemning Sudan president warrant, July 14, 2010; h

Umma National Party Calls on Other Parties to Respond to Al Bashir’s Call, July 21, 2010;

UN: Strengthen Civilian Protection in Darfur, July 19, 2010.

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