Sudan calls for emergency Arab League meeting

The report cited Khartoum's ambassador to the Cairo-based League as saying Sudan had submitted its request to the office of Arab League chief Amr Moussa,

Sudan calls for emergency Arab League meeting
Sudan asked the Arab League to hold an emergency meeting of foreign ministers after reports the International Criminal Court's (ICC) prosecutor may seek the arrest of Sudan's president, Egyptian media said on Saturday.

A senior European diplomat said on Friday the ICC's prosecutor would likely seek President Omar Hassan al-Bashir's arrest in a new war crimes case he will open on Darfur on Monday.

Sudan has said any such move could undermine the peace process in Darfur. The issue could also pit the demands of the U.N.-backed ICC against U.N. interests in deploying a peace force there, and aid officials fear a potential backlash.

Egypt's state news agency MENA said Sudan called for an emergency Arab League foreign ministers' meeting "to look into the situation between Sudan and the International Criminal Court".

It cited Khartoum's ambassador to the Cairo-based League as saying Sudan had submitted its request to the office of Arab League chief Amr Moussa, but gave no further details.

ICC Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo is due to submit to judges "evidence on crimes committed in the whole of Darfur over the last five years" and seek to charge an individual or individuals, a prosecution statement said on Thursday.

It gave no details. The Washington Post quoted U.N. officials and diplomats as saying the prosecutor would charge Bashir with genocide and crimes against humanity on Monday.

Judges will probably take several weeks or months to rule on the likely application for new arrest warrants.

ICC judges issued arrest warrants for two Sudanese officials last year -- government minister Ahmad Harun and militia commander Ali Kushayb. Khartoum has refused to hand them over.

Only about 9,000 troops and police out of a planned 26,000-strong U.N. and African Union peacekeeping force have so far been deployed in Darfur in Sudan's west.

Reuters
Last Mod: 12 Temmuz 2008, 14:08
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