Sunday, June 14, 2015

Sudanese President Detained In South Africa Pending Court Order

Sudan's President Omar Hassan al-Bashir speaks to the crowd after a swearing-in ceremony at green square in Khartoum, June 2, 2015. Speaking at the start of a new presidential term that extends his quarter century in power, Bashir, 71, also appealed for national unity as he grapples with rebellions and dwindling oil revenues following South Sudan's 2011 secession. Image by: REUTERS/Stringer / REUTERS

The North Gauteng high court has ordered the South African government to prevent Sudan president Omar Al-Bashir from leaving the country pending the urgent application to compel SA to arrest him for war crimes.

The Southern African Litigation Centre brought the application for an order compelling SA to issue a warrant for Al-Bashir’s arrest on Sunday after the International Criminal Court called for Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir to be arrested on Sunday at a summit of African leaders in Johannesburg.

Isabelle Ellis‚ for the SA government‚ asked for the matter to stand down until 3pm to allow the state to prepare the answering affidavit and heads of argument. She said she had only received the applicant’s papers at 10am this morning and has not had a chance to get proper instructions.

Ellis argued that there was a cabinet decision to adopt the AU’s resolution not to comply with the ICC’s call to arrest Al-Bashir.

The applicants lawyer Isabel Goodman agreed that the matter stand down for three hours on condition that Judge Peter Fabricius grants an interim order preventing Al-Bashir from leaving the country.

 The ICC indicted Al-Bashir for war crimes in 2009 for his role in the 2003 conflict which resulted in the death of more than 300‚000 people and displaced 2.5-million people‚ according to United Nations.


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