ICC reports Sudan to UN for lack of cooperation with arrest warrants

[JURIST] The International Criminal Court (ICC) [official website] on Wednesday reported [press release] Sudan to the UN Security Council [official website] for lack of cooperation in the pursuit of alleged war criminals [case materials] Ahmad Harun and Ali Kushayb [arrest warrants, PDF]. ICC Pre-Trial Chamber I released a decision [text, PDF] asking the Security Council to take any steps it deems appropriate to compel Sudan to comply with its obligation under Resolution 1593 [text, PDF], which provides that "the Government of Sudan and all other parties to the conflict in Darfur shall cooperate fully with and provide any necessary assistance to the Court and the Prosecutor pursuant to this resolution.'' The three-judge panel stated that the ICC has taken all possible measures to ensure cooperation from Sudan, but the government has refused to provide any assistance or information in regards to the case of Harun and Kushayb. Since the ICC concluded that it has exhausted all its resources, the responsibility will now be shifted to the Security Council to take appropriate action. Sudan, which is not a permanent member of the ICC under the Rome Statute [text], refuses to recognize the court's jurisdiction, stating that "the International Criminal Court has no place in this crisis at all." Harun and Kushayb are wanted for 51 counts [case materials] of crimes against humanity and war crimes.

The decision stemmed from a request filed [JURIST report] by ICC Chief Prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo [official profile] last month for a finding of non-cooperation pursuant to Article 87 of the Rome Statute for the government's refusal to arrest Harun and Kushayb. The request stated that "[t]o the contrary, the [government of Sudan] continues to commit crimes, promotes and protects the persons sought by the Court; and harasses all persons who are considered to be in favor of justice." The majority of the ICC caseload has come from Africa, causing tense relations with the governments in the region. On Monday, a collection of African civil society organizations issued a declaration urging greater cooperation [JURIST report] between the ICC and African nations in anticipation of the upcoming ICC Review Conference of the Rome Statute [official website]. The group of 124 organizations called on African governments to enhance their cooperation with the court and to make greater efforts in the execution of outstanding warrants. The review conference will take place in Kampala, Uganda from May 31 to June 11, 2010. During the conference, member states will consider proposed amendments [text] to the statute.

 

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