Monday 23 Jul 2018 | 08:09 | SYDNEY
Monday 23 Jul 2018 | 08:09 | SYDNEY

Accused war criminal in charge of humanitarian affairs


Fergus Hanson


30 April 2008 11:10

The Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) had this reminder that just over a year ago, the Court issued arrest warrants against two Sudanese: the former Minister of State for the Interior and a Janjaweed leader. They were charged with 51 counts of alleged crimes against humanity and war crimes.

Both are free in Sudan and it’s not as if the Sudanese government doesn’t know where they are. In fact, cocking a snook at the international community and the people of Darfur, Sudan has appointed one of the accused Minister of State for Humanitarian Affairs.

In his statement the Prosecutor urged “the international community to send a strong and unanimous message to the Government of the Sudan.” Keeping its arrest warrants on the international agenda remains an important objective for the Court. In an interview with The Interpreter earlier this month, the Prosecutor said “I was very grateful that at the…UN General Assembly in October 2007, Australia called on the Sudanese Government to execute the Court’s arrest warrants.” I hope Stephen Smith sees the value in seeing and raising his predecessors activism on ICC issues. Without a police force of its own, pressure from supportive states amounts to the Court’s greatest asset.