International Criminal Court issues arrest warrant for Sudan’s President Omar Hassan al-Bashir

On Wednesday, a three-judge panel of the International Criminal Court issued an arrest warrant for Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir for war crimes and crimes against humanity in Darfur.  According to the Associated Press, the warrant is for five charges of crimes against humanity and two of war crimes including murder, extermination, torture and rape.  The warrant stops short of supporting charges of genocide.

Mr. al-Bashir is the first sitting head of state to be indicted for war crimes.  According to, the international criminal court’s chief prosecutor, Luis Moreno Ocampo, says he has 30 witnesses willing to provide testimony against the Sudanese president.

The feelings on the continent of Africa are mixed on the Hague’s decision to issue this warrant.  Many African leaders would like to find other ways to deal with the Sudanese government, though no ideas are floating right now.   The thought is that Sudan’s government may push back on  the arrest warrant and  that  black Africans in Darfur would be treated even more harshly.

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