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Sudan Tribune

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Show Trials are not substitutes for International Criminal Courts

Damanga Statement (http://www.damanga.org)

Aug 23, 2005 — On Saturday August 13, a Sudanese criminal court convicted three low level members of the Sudanese army of “waging war” in Darfur. This trial was part of a special tribunal set up by the Sudanese government to try around 160 people for war crimes committed in Darfur. President Omar al-Bashir intends these trials to replace the trails to be conducted by the International Criminal Court at The Hague, since he has vowed that he will never hand over any Sudanese to an international court.1 Damanga strongly protests the Sudanese government’s attempt to ignore its responsibilities to the International Criminal Court at The Hague. The show trial concluded in August by the Sudanese court does not do justice to the victims of genocide in Darfur. These trials will not ensure that the government will cease perpetuating atrocities against its own people. As recent reports from Darfur illustrate atrocities continue in Darfur even as these Sudanese trials are being conducted. (See www.Damanga.org)

Damanga maintains that the proceedings of the Sudanese court can not be a substitute for the work of the International Criminal Court. The Sudanese government must cooperate with the Court’s work and surrender to them any Sudanese that the International Criminal Court accuses of crimes.

The very regime that planned the genocide can not be expected to prosecute or blame itself, leave alone provide justice to the victims of the genocide. This is made clear not only by the fact that they have prosecuted low level soldiers, but also by the fact that even these soldiers merely received a sentence of five years in prison. If they are truly responsible for the genocide in Darfur how should we interpret such a meager sentence? The Durfurain genocide is the work of Sudan’s top leadership; these are the real criminals. Prosecuting lieutenants, corporals or foot soldiers in the field is surely a vain attempt to deceive the world and to allow those who orchestrated the killings to walk free.

We urge the international community to pursue the genocidiaries at the top of the Sudanese government for their part in the genocide. Included in this list are men like the head of the Sudanese security, Saleh Gosh, who, ironically, was the guest of the US government in the recent past, despite the fact that he has the blood of Darfurians dripping from his hands., The UN Commission of Inquiry Chair Cassese has named 52 top officials for investigation although this list has been under seal and is not available for public view. Damanga believes that the following men should also be pursued by the International Criminal Court and brought to justice for their roles in the Darfurain genocide:

– Omer Hassan Albashir – President of Sudan
– Ali Osman Taha, former – Vice President of Sudan,
– Abderahim Mohamed Hussain – former Minister of Interior
– Nafe Ali Nafe – Minister of the Federation Government.
– Saleh Gosh – Head of Sudanese Security
– General Ahmed Al-As – Minister of Interior
– Ahmed Haroun – Assistant Minister of Interior
– General Bakri Hassan Sale – Minister of Defense
– Ataiab Ibrahim Mohamed Khair – former Governor of Darfur and Security Advisor to President al-Bashir (his nick name is Seikha),
– General Pilot Abdalla Safi Elnour – former Governor of North Darfur
– Adam Hamid Moussa – former Governor of South Darfur,
– Alhaj Atal-Manan – new Governor of South Darfur,
– General Osman Yousif Kibir – Governor of North Darfur,
– General Retiree Soliman Abdalla, – Governor of western Darfur
– Governor.Abdalla Ali Massar – Governor of River Nile
– Ali Mohamed Yassin – Chief of the Judiciary
– Ali Ahmed Aljaz – Minister of Minerals and Petroleum
– Abdulhamid Musa Kasha – Minister of Trade
– Mohamed Yousif Abdalla – Minister of Humanitarian Affairs
– Ali Ahmed Karti – Popular Defense Coordinator,
– Janjaweed Leaders: Mussa Hillal, Hamid Aldawai, and Abdalla Ab-shenibat.

There are many others but these are the individuals that have had the most responsibility in leading the campaign of genocide in Darfur.

The international community must hold the Government of Sudan responsible and send a message to all the world that any government who decides to slaughter its own people will be held accountable. Only this will help heal the wounds of the victims of the Darfurian genocide, and hopefully also help prevent such atrocities from occurring in the future.