An official source at the Foreign Ministry has expressed Qatar’s regret over the arrest warrant issued by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for Sudan President Omar Hassan Al Bashir.
In a statement to Qatar News Agency (QNA), the source said the arrest warrant doesn’t serve peace and stability in the troubled region of Darfur and would hamper efforts made by Qatar to bring peace in Darfur. The talks, assigned by the Arab League and blessed by the international community, culminated in the signing of a goodwill and confidence building agreement between Sudan’s national unity government and the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM).
The source appealed to the United Nations Security Council to build on what had been achieved in Doha in accordance with Article 16 of the Rome Statute, to defer the arrest warrant for one year in order to open the door for mediation efforts being made by Qatar on Darfur, to achieve the aspired peace.
Meanwhile, United Nations General Assembly president Miguel d’Escoto Brockmann yesterday condemned the ICC decision, saying it was politically motivated. “I am sorry about the decision of the ICC. It is more a decision motivated by political considerations than really for the sake of advancing the cause of justice in the world,” the Nicaraguan diplomat said.
It would have preferable to let the ongoing peace negotiations on Darfur continue, rather than turn the issue into an international legal matter, Brockmann added.
He said it was “absurd” to have ignored calls by the African Union not to issue the warrant. There were “a few people with a very dubious past” who “put themselves on a pedestal of purity and immaculate behaviour.”
“To find the peace we are looking for, it would be important to begin by indicting people from powerful nations, not smaller ones,” said Brockmann, adding that “everyone knows who I am talking about. The biggest atrocity today is the one being committed in Iraq.”
Bashir’s key ally China also came out against the warrant. “China expresses its regretfulness and worry over the arrest warrant for the Sudan president issued by the International Criminal Court,” foreign ministry spokesman Qin Gang said. Qin called on the UN Security Council to “respect calls by the African Union, Arab League and Non-Aligned Movement... and call on the International Criminal Court not to hear this case for the time being.”
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