Last night, when the news broke that the judges at the International Criminal Court were set to issue an arrest warrant for Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir, The Enough Project, the Save Darfur Coalition, and the Genocide Intervention Network issued a joint statement making their position on the Court’s expected decision clear:
[The] decision will likely add international legal weight to a long obvious truth – primary responsibility for the atrocities in Darfur rests with the regime that Bashir heads. Individual nations and the international community as a whole cannot continue to do business as usual with Bashir once he is an indicted war criminal.
The groups stressed that while the arrest warrant will present challenges, it will also provide an opportunity for peace in Sudan:
The international community, led by the United States, must pursue a comprehensive, negotiated peace in Sudan that builds on the framework of the CPA and takes into account the needs and rights of all citizens. Ultimately, the problem of Darfur cannot be resolved unless the problem of Sudan is resolved.
"There will be a lot of anxiety in different capitals because of the court’s decision, but we should not forget the obvious," said John Norris, Executive Director of Enough. "There has been a very long pattern of profound abuses and atrocities in Sudan directed from the highest echelons of government, and President Bashir, as the head of government, needs to be held accountable for these crimes."
Stay tuned for much more from Enough as the situation develops.