Saturday, December 05, 2009

Darfur crimes continue, Sudan not cooperating with ICC, official says

United Nations (CNN) -- The International Criminal Court's chief prosecutor reported Friday to the U.N. Security Council that violence continues in Darfur and that the Sudanese president and his government are not cooperating with investigators.

Luis Moreno-Ocampo noted positive developments in judicial proceedings and "fruitful" cooperation with international bodies, but said there still remain many setbacks. He explained that crimes continue in the region, including "indiscriminate bombings of civilians ... rapes and sexual violence" and the "use of child soldiers."

Moreno-Ocampo also highlighted Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir's role in the situation. "Any leader committing crimes will face justice. Power does not provide immunity."

Al-Bashir has refused to appoint a lawyer to represent his position in court and, because of the ICC-issued warrant for his arrest, has not risked traveling to attend high-level events such as the U.N. General Assembly or a meeting held by the Organization of the Islamic Conference, or to other countries where it had been thought he might go, such as Uganda, Nigeria and Venezuela.

Moreno-Ocampo said respect for the International Criminal Court's decision to issue the warrant would send a clear message that al-Bashir "will face justice." Read more >>>>>>>>

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