Op woensdag 4 maart vaardigde het Internationaal Strafhof een arrestatiebevel uit tegen de Soedanese President Omar al Bashir. Hij wordt verdacht van oorlogsmisdaden en misdaden tegen de menselijkheid. In reactie hierop vraagt Amnesty dat President al Bashir zichzelf onmiddellijk aangeeft zodat het proces tegen hem van start kan gaan.
In reaction to today’s decision by the International Criminal Court (ICC) to issue an arrest warrant for Sudanese President Omar al Bashir on charges of crimes against humanity and war crimes, Amnesty International said that President al Bashir must surrender himself immediately to face trial.
"The law is clear. President al Bashir must appear before the ICC to defend himself. If he refuses to do so, the Sudanese authorities must ensure that he is arrested and surrendered immediately to the ICC," said Irene Khan, Amnesty International’s Secretary General.
Today’s arrest warrant for the Sudanese head of state is an unprecedented move in the history of a conflict that has seen more than 300,000 killed, thousands raped, and millions forcibly displaced.
“This announcement is an important signal – both for Darfur and the rest of the world – that suspected human rights violators will face trial, no matter how powerful they are,” said Irene Khan.
Sudan’s Constitution currently affords its head of state immunity from criminal prosecution while in office. However, no international instrument has ever recognized any immunity for crimes against humanity or war crimes.
Sudanese authorities have a legal obligation to arrest anyone named in an ICC arrest warrant under Security Council Resolution 1593 (2005), which requires Sudan to cooperate with the ICC.
Amnesty International said that should President al Bashir leave Sudan, the government of any country in which he finds himself has an obligation to deny him safe haven by arresting him immediately as a fugitive from justice and surrendering him to the ICC.
"No one is above the law. If you are charged with a crime, you must stand up and face those charges in a court of law. President al Bashir will have the opportunity to do this before the International Criminal Court," said Irene Khan.