Home | News    Wednesday 10 April 2013

Chad’s last minute postponement of conference scraps Bashir’s travel plans

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April 9, 2013 (WASHINGTON) – The Chadian government announced abruptly today that it was postponing the Great Green Wall summit scheduled for Wednesday just as the Sudanese president Omer Hassan al-Bashir got ready to head there.

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Chadian President Idriss Deby

Chad president Idriss Deby has reportedly asked for the postponement due to conflicting schedules of participating leaders.

"In the meeting we just had, the president [Deby] proposed moving forward the date...because the calendar for the various Heads of States is already packed." said the Chadian Minister of Agriculture and Irrigation Dandé Laoubelé at the end of a meeting between Deby and African ministers.

"President [Deby therefore] suggested to postpone the summit until the second half of June," he added according to Chadian presidency website.

This is the second time Chad postpones the summit which was originally scheduled for last month amid speculations that it was pushed back over controversy related to Bashir’s presence.

But last month Chad’s foreign minister Moussa Faki Mahamat denied that his government asked Bashir not to attend and dismissed reports of international pressure to shun the Sudanese leader.

Yesterday the Sudanese foreign minister spokesperson Abu-Bakr al-Sideeg told pro-government al-Rayaam daily that Bashir will fly to Ndjamena on Tuesday evening for the conference.

He said that Bashir will be accompanied by presidential affairs minister Bakri Hassan Saleh, foreign minister Ali Karti and minister of Environment and Forestry Hassan Abdel-Gadir Hilal who was already in Chad for the ministerial meetings.

Bashir has been wanted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) since 2009 on charges of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity in Sudan’s war-torn Darfur region.

This would have been Bashir’s fourth visit to Chad, which is a signatory to the Rome Statute, the founding document of the ICC.

This week Bashir stayed away from the inauguration ceremony of Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta despite reports that he would attend.

Like Chad, Kenya is also an ICC state party but chose to receive Bashir in August 2010 drawing wide domestic and international criticism.

African countries rallied behind Bashir and issued resolutions stating that they will not cooperate with the ICC in apprehending the Sudanese leader even if Bashir visits countries which have ratified the Rome Statue.

This has enabled Bashir to visit African ICC signatories such as Kenya, Malawi, Djibouti and Chad without incident.

Today Human Right Watch (HRW) issued a statement criticizing Chad for moving to host Bashir for the fourth time.

“Chad took a step in the right direction when it avoided President al-Bashir’s visit in March,” said Elise Keppler, senior international justice counsel at HRW.

“Al-Bashir is sought on charges for heinous crimes in Darfur. He should be arrested, not welcomed” she added.

(ST)

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  • 10 April 2013 10:41, by steven

    Hopefully all the conflicts will be handled rationally and solved for a better future.

    repondre message

  • 10 April 2013 10:43, by ForAll

    Then what is the ROI for his visit?

    repondre message

  • 11 April 2013 09:38, by bak junup

    I don’t when will ICC react to those government who still receiving president of Sudan Omer Hassen Al-Bashir does it they don’t know ICC regulation if it happen to any one them and arrested you in his than they will regrade their miss take.

    repondre message

  • 11 April 2013 09:54, by Turism

    This guy called Bashir will not go cooz he is fearing of ICC that he will one day be handingover to ICC.

    repondre message

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