Archive | Sudan

Janjaweed militiamen gang-rape 3 Darfur women: IDP spokesman

NOVANEWS

Janjaweed may head to Sanaa 

Three Darfuri women were gang-raped after they left their camps to gather firewood, a spokesperson for Darfur displaced said today.
JPEG - 17.1 kb
Sudanese women made homeless during the five-year Darfur conflict, crowd to see President Omar al-Beshir during his trip to El-Fasher, north Darfur on July 23, 2008 (AFP)

 

“This happens at a time when government officials claim that Darfur is enjoying security. The crimes and human right violations continue” Hussein Abu-Sharati the spokesperson of Darfur displaced and refugees at the Kalma camp in South Darfur told Sudan Tribune.

Abu-Sharati said that the women were intercepted by a group of Janjaweed militiamen who were present in the area of Wadi Bargo in South Darfur.

He listed the names of the victims as Tayba Adam Al-Tahir 15 years old; Aicha Youssef 17 years old; Kaltouma Salih 55 years old.

“The three women are at the Kass hospital in South Darfur in case anyone has doubts” he added.

The Janjaweed is a heavily armed militia blamed for waging a campaign of rape, killing and pillage in Darfur.

Rights groups and Western governments say that Khartoum used the Janjaweed as a proxy militia against Darfur rebels and civilians suspected of rebel sympathies. However the government denies this and says that the Janjaweed are outlaws.

Abu-Sharati said that an Egyptian officer with the United Nations – African Union Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) was notified of the incident “but took no action”.

“We also informed the UN officer in charge of humanitarian aid to be our witness. There can be no peace in Darfur without giving us security” he said.

In mid-July the ICC’s prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo submitted to the judges of Pre-Trial Chamber I an application for an arrest warrant against Sudanese president Omar Hassan Al-Bashir.

Ocampo filed 10 charges against Al-Bashir: three counts of genocide, five of crimes against humanity and two of murder against the African tribes of Fur, Masalit and Zaghawa.

Ocampo alleged that rape in Darfur “has been committed systematically and continuously for 5 years”.

“Rape is an integral part of the pattern of destruction that the Government of the Sudan is inflicting upon the target groups in Darfur” the prosecutor stated in the summary of his application submitted to the judges.

In a separate incident Abu-Sharati said that Sudanese security officers arrested families of the IDP’s who came to visit them.

“Last week they took away around 73 people. They stopped cars at checkpoints leading to Kalma and Abu-Shouk camps and ask passengers to get out. They picked a number of them and took them to an unknown location” Abu-Sharati said.

“Their families know nothing about them. The Sudanese authorities must release them and guarantee their legal rights” he added.

UN experts estimate some 300,000 people have died and 2.5 million driven from their homes. Sudan blames the Western media for exaggerating the conflict and puts the death toll at 10,000.

Posted in Sudan, Yemen0 Comments

The United States Is Doing Little to Help Stop the Carnage in South Sudan

NOVANEWS

By Nick Turse, Haymarket Books 

A camp for internally displaced people that started after a civil war broke out more than two years ago in Juba, South Sudan, on March 3, 2016. (Photo: Tyler Hicks / The New York Times)

A camp for internally displaced people that started after a civil war broke out more than two years ago in Juba, South Sudan, on March 3, 2016. (Photo: Tyler Hicks / The New York Times)

Beginning in the 1980s, the efforts of an eclectic, bipartisan coalition of American supporters — Washington activists, evangelical Christians, influential congressional representatives, celebrities, a presidential administration focused on regime change and nation-building, and another that picked up the mantle — helped “midwife” South Sudan into existence.

Perhaps no country in Africa received as much congressional attention. And on July 9, 2011, its Independence Day, President Barack Obama released a stirring statement. “I am confident that the bonds of friendship between South Sudan and the United States will only deepen in the years to come. As Southern Sudanese undertake the hard work of building their new country, the United States pledges our partnership as they seek the security, development, and responsive governance that can fulfill their aspirations and respect their human rights.” In August 2012, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, speaking in Juba, was emphatic that the US “commitment to this new nation is enduring and absolute in terms of assistance and aid and support going forward.”

What are the ongoing obligations of a midwife? How solid are the bonds of friendship between the United States and South Sudan? How solemn was Obama’s pledge of partnership and Clinton’s of enduring support?

For years, the United States has dumped untold billions of dollars into regime-change operations, nation-building schemes, military interventions, and interminable wars in the Greater Middle East. Iraqis and Afghans, Syrians, Libyans, and Yemenis have grappled with the consequences. South Sudan was a different type of American intervention, but the results turned out to be sadly similar for its people.

The United States provided some roads and electricity, built up the army, and poured a great deal of money into the new nation. Now, it’s reduced to providing humanitarian aid as part of an international effort to fend off the famine that’s forever knocking on the young country’s door. For all I know, the red beans [a boy I encountered] was picking out of the dirt [around a makeshift airport in South Sudan] were “from the American people” — as big bags of US Agency for International Development sorghum, rice, lentils, and other emergency staples are branded the world over.

But is that enough?

Is it enough for a man to feel ashamed and leave a rail-thin child to pluck spilled beans from the dirt? Is it enough for a country to pledge enduring commitment and instead provide just enough food aid to keep the nation it fostered on life support? This is not to say that the United States has offered a trivial sum.The approximately $1.3 billion spent on relief efforts since the country plunged in civil war in 2013 is significant.At least until you realize that a year of ineffective efforts bombing the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria cost about three times that amount.

“The United States will support the people of South Sudan as they begin the implementation process, but it is imperative that the parties remain committed to peace,” National Security Advisor Susan Rice announced on August 26, 2015, after a peace deal was signed between Salva Kiir and Riek Machar. “Together, we must help South Sudan implement the agreement, to stave off famine, to stand steadfast and united against those who block the path to peace, and to hold accountable those who have committed atrocities.”

Since the civil war began, American officials have made a series of similar statements to little effect. Whether this peace deal holds or crumbles like the many cease fires before it, the United States faces a choice: Will it lavish the sort of taxpayer dollars it normally devotes to war-making on its foster child or will it leave this fledgling, fractured country with beans, platitudes, and little else?

TRUTHOUT PROGRESSIVE PICK

TITLENick Turse talks to the people who have managed to survive the grim reality of modern warfare in South Sudan.

Click here now to get the book!

“The United States will continue to support the aspirations of all Sudanese,” declared President Obama at the close of his statement on South Sudan’s Independence Day in 2011. “Together, we can ensure that today marks another step forward in Africa’s long journey toward opportunity, democracy, and justice.”In nation-building projects from Afghanistan to Iraq, military interventions from Libya to Yemen, military aid efforts from Mali to Burkina Faso, the United States has turned out to be remarkably inept when it comes to providing opportunities, the basics for democratic polities, or justice of any imaginable kind. Invariably, such normally military-oriented or -led American endeavors have ended in failure, disappointment, and in a number of cases outright fiasco.

As South Sudan was midwifed into nationhood “by any means necessary,” atrocities from the 1990s and earlier were swept under the rug, only to have them resurface in recent years. Will history repeat itself? Will the United States and its international partners make every conceivable effort “to hold accountable those who have committed atrocities” in order to help achieve a permanent peace? Or will they take an easier road — one that silences the guns of today only to have them ring out anew with even greater fury at the dawn of some distant tomorrow — or perhaps even sooner? It remains to be seen whether the United States will “stand steadfast,” step back, or walk away from the nation it spent so much time and effort ushering into existence — and whether it matters at all what course South Sudan’s foster parent charts.

Posted in USA, SudanComments Off on The United States Is Doing Little to Help Stop the Carnage in South Sudan

Sudan detains human rights defender Dr Mudawi Ibrahim Adam, again

It seems that this soft-spoken man of the deepest integrity is a threat to those who seek to maintain their brutal power in Sudan. His ability to work with people from all backgrounds, his unswerving commitment to truth and justice, and his international connections and credibility are seen by the ruling elite as dangerous qualities.

Dr Mudawi Ibrahim Adam is in detention again in Khartoum. He was taken by the National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS) from the University of Khartoum on 7th December and is being held without access to his lawyer or his family. He has previously been detained on several occasions, for over a month in 2010 and earlier for a total of 18 months in several spells during 2003-2005.

Dr Mudawi is an award winning human rights defender and someone who has dedicated his life to peacefully working for social development and the rights of all people in Sudan.

He was the founder and Chairperson of SUDO, the Sudan Social Development Organization, which was the largest Sudanese organization providing support to internally displaced people and other vulnerable communities until it was closed down by the authorities in 2009. That closure was subsequently ruled to be illegal by the Sudanese courts but SUDO has still not been allowed to restart operations within the country.

Ironically, Dr Mudawi was criticised by some people this year for agreeing to take part in the Sudanese Government sponsored National Dialogue. His arrest puts in question the sincerity of the Government’s efforts to find a peaceful resolution of the country’s many problems. His detention coincides with an ongoing clampdown on human rights defenders and peaceful protest.

Dr Mudawi is a Professor of Engineering at the University of Khartoum and runs his own successful engineering company. A significant part of his professional work has been focused on bringing clean water and sanitation to communities across Sudan.

In 2005 Dr Mudawi was the inaugural winner of the Front Line Defenders Award for Human Rights Defenders at Risk. In the same year he also received the prestigious Human Rights First Prize.

In 2010 the Sudanese authorities fabricated charges of financial mismanagement against Dr Mudawi, but were unable to bring any credible evidence to court. It seems they are again seeking to manufacture evidence against him. His driver Adam El-Sheikh was also detained on 7th December. Nora Abaid, the accountant at Dr Mudawi’s engineering company, was detained by the NISS on 12th December. Both are being held without access to lawyers or family and are considered to be at risk of torture.

It seems that this soft-spoken man of the deepest integrity is a threat to those who seek to maintain their brutal power in Sudan.

Posted in SudanComments Off on Sudan detains human rights defender Dr Mudawi Ibrahim Adam, again

Making sense of the proposal to upgrade UN mission to South Sudan

IBT UK

Heads of State from East and the Horn of Africa have endorsed a proposal to deploy a rapid protection force to South Sudan, which would later serve under the UN mission (UNMISS) with an enhanced mandate. But this is unlikely to solve the crisis in the world’s newest nation. UNMISS has serious weaknesses and, perhaps more importantly, the South Sudanese conflict is largely economic.

From 7 to 11 of July 2016, Juba, the capital of South Sudan, was put under serious tension and constant bombardment as a result of the fight that erupted once again since December 2013 between the forces loyal to President Salva Kiir and former First Vice-President Dr Riek Machar. The renewal of the conflict has been met with a lot of condemnation, particularly at the international spheres. This led to an outright proposal of the intervention force by IGAD Heads of State, a view that seems to augur well with many other international diplomatic organisations, particularly the UN.

On the 5 August 2016, the Assembly of the IGAD Heads of State held its Second Extra-Ordinary Summit meeting in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and deliberated on the prevailing situation in the Republic of South Sudan. In their resolution, the IGAD Heads of State endorsed the outcome of the meeting of the East African Chiefs of Defense Staff held on 29 July 2016, in Addis Ababa, on the deployment of a Regional Protection Force (RPF) as the basis for further and urgent discussion with the United Nations towards reaching a common ground on speedy deployment of the Force under UNMISS. In their Communique, the IGAD Heads of State further called upon the UNSC to expedite the process of extending UNMISS mandate including the deployment of the Regional Protection Force with distinct responsibilities. And since the IGAD Heads of State have given this hint, it will be much easier for the eagerly awaited United Nations Security Council (UNSC) to extend the UNMISS mandate, that will include the RPF.

However, one pertinent question remains as to whether the suggested RPF plus the existing UN peacekeepers will be effective in bringing the desperately needed stability in the country. First of all, like so many other UN missions, UNMISS has been and is still a highly dysfunctional and a “mafia” mission characterized by so many incompetent international personnel, and many of whom bear “low moral standing” – basically living in debauchery and corrupt to the core.

Secondly, when it comes to protection of civilians, UNMISS has not lived up to its recent mandate – “protection of civilians”. Since 2013, UNMISS has demonstrated its incapability in so many occasions to protect civilians, for example in Bor, Malakal and even in Yambio, where hundreds upon hundreds of vulnerable civilians were left stranded at the mission’s gates.

In addition, UNMISS has from time to time failed to protect its national staff members who are deplorably discriminated and disenfranchised, particularly when one closely looks at the UNMISS operational or systemic policies. It beats conscientious reasoning as to why such a dilapidated organization would be charged with even a bigger and a more challenging task.

Thirdly, the whole of the Eastern and Horn of Africa region is in one way or the other troubled by the insecurities of tribalism and corruption, and that means the RPF to South Sudan will carry all of these inadequacies with them. This, coupled with the already existing enormous systemic challenges of UNMISS and the dynamics and complexities of the South Sudanese conflict, will definitely leave a lot of doubts on the effectiveness and the successes that the forthcoming UNMISS mandate will make  as far as bringing peace to the war ravaged South Sudan is concerned.

The South Sudanese conflict is economically and institutionally driven; therefore, instead of sending in more troops to Juba, more focus in terms of resources and energy should be directed towards the economic and resilience building in vulnerable communities of South Sudan.  As echoed in the Preamble of the UN Charter that, “We the peoples of the United Nations are determined to employ international machinery for the promotion of the economic and social advancement of all peoples”, one would suggest that UNMISS in terms of manpower and operations should be scaled down and more resources should be channeled to the UN agencies and other humanitarian organisations with clear and well-articulated guidelines in line with South Sudan Development Plan on the areas of economic and social enhancement in which the funding should be used.

The Agreement on the Resolution of the Conflict in South Sudan (ARCISS) provides a good platform on how to revive the dwindling South Sudanese economy. There is a need to deliver on the Special Fund for Reconstruction (SRF) pledged by the international partners and friends of South Sudan and to be administered by Board of Special Reconstruction Fund (BSRF). South Sudan needs a vibrant economy with well-structured and functioning transitional institutions and mechanisms, instead of a huge, but redundant peacekeeping force.

Posted in SudanComments Off on Making sense of the proposal to upgrade UN mission to South Sudan

On Intisar’s Zina charges and stoning sentence

NOVANEWS

Image result for stoning sentence PHOTO

The recent sentencing to death by stoning of a young woman accused of adultery stands against all the values, traditions and heritage of the Sudanese and signifies the reactionary political agenda of a tyrannical regime.

On 22 April 2012, Sudanese judge Sami Ibrahim Shabo sentenced to death by stoning a young woman accused of Zina (adultery). Her name is Intisar Sharif Abdalla, married and a mother of three little children. The judgement itself is ruthless under any Islamic Sharia and Fiqh interpretation; stoning hasn’t been applied to a woman for adultery in Sudan despite the country’s fundamentalist religious legal system. The Islamic Fiqh Hudud (corporal punishment) in crimes such as cutting of limbs, the punishment for theft, and stoning to death, the punishment of Zina are silently suspended, yet not lifted from the criminal code and remain present in Sudan’s legal system.

Intisar was accused of having a relationship and being impregnated by a man that wasn’t her husband. After being reported by her brother, initially she and her co-accused both denied the charges. Later the case was reopened again by the brother and Intisar confessed to committing adultery. The most disturbing aspect of this case is that the admission of guilt and judicial sentencing comes following a period of sustained beatings by her brother who brought forward the case. The absence of legal representation and clarification of the procedures for the woman in question, whose first language is not Arabic, is equally troublesome. She was taken to court where Judge Sami Ibrahim Shabo of Ombada General Criminal Court in Omdurman city of greater Khartoum state, sentenced her to stoning to death after one court session. Lawyers only gained access to her after the judgement was made. The man co-accused with Intisar was released based on his mere denial of the charges of Zina!

Intisar’s case highlights the fickle application of international human rights conventions and legislation that Sudan has voluntarily become party to, such as the International Convention on Civil and Political Rights, the Convention against Torture and the African Charter and its protocol on the rights of women. This case demonstrates the difficulty of reconciling Sudan’s current legal jurisdiction and its regional and international obligations as a member of international and regional communities. This contradiction is as well reflected in the massive polarisation taking place in Sudan at the moment as well as challenges to peaceful coexistence between the different nations inside the country.

Furthermore, the stoning judgment stands against all the values, traditions and heritage of the Sudanese. Given the fact that the application of Zina has so far been dormant in Sudan, this case ought to be read within the broader political and cultural dynamics at work in Sudan currently, and in particular the religious discourses out of which justification for Zina is derived. These discourses, which I briefly outline below, point to the fact that there is more at play than the moral justifications given for this harsh judgement.

There are significant and complex differences among the Islamic Fiqh schools regarding the conditions required for a valid Zina confession and for testimonial evidence. These differences are based on the varying levels of different arguments within Fiqh schools. For example while some Islamic schools require the Zina confession to be uttered four separate times and require the presence of four witnesses during the act of Zina, the Maliki school (dominant in Sudan) considers either one’s confession or the presence of four witnesses as sufficient. However, in cases of pregnancy as a result of Zina, the majority of opinion in the Maliki Fiqh School agrees that the duration of a woman’s pregnancy can last up to seven years before she is subjected to court trial. [1]

A closer look at the classical Islamic schools, mainly the Sunah schools (Madahib) and the scholarship that emerged in the 8th century on the Islamic legal system shows that, they all tried to prevent the conviction of women for Zina and avoided stoning as a brutal form of punishment. It is unacceptable that now, 12 centuries later, a judge sitting in Sudan, or in any other part of the Muslim world for that matter, would rule out all accumulated knowledge, wisdom and various accumulated attempts of interpretations given the complexity of the issue, and choose to sentence a young woman to death.

The sentencing of Intisar comes in accordance with Article 146 of the Sudanese Criminal Code. However, ultimately what the Islamic Sharia of Sudan’s criminal code reveals is the deeply rooted discriminatory nature of Sudan’s legal system generated from the ruling regime’s ideology which perceives women as purveyors of moral wrongs and seeks to banish illegal aliens.

The repression of women in Sudan is illustrated in the Sudanese legislative system’s approach towards women. Both Sudan’s criminal and family codes are engineered through a mix of criminal and moral prohibitions which blur the distinction between the creation of law in the service of promoting a particular public interest and the imposition of moral precepts based on specific ideological conviction. The de-anchoring of the law from a clear standard of general public interest leaves Sudan’s legislation in relation to personal matters particularly open to exploitation as a tool to express the temporary interests of the authorities in control. A good example is the public order police of Sudan’s Special Forces that are assigned to terrorise women and interrogate them by observing their personal behaviour, their dress code, their mobility and their exposure in the public sphere. Ultimately the ideology behind the articles and the application of the Sudanese criminal code is meant to enforce the tyranny of the ruling regime through alienating women by crippling their public participation, both of which have a paralysing effect on society as a whole.

Politically, Intisar’s sentencing is significant. She is originally from South Kordofan, the most recent region where civil conflict erupted in Sudan. Following the independence of South Sudan, gender and racial profiling and discrimination is dominating the current political scene in the country. In addition, the fluidity of Sudan’s current legal system poses a serious threat to thousands of women currently living in the country, enduring and suffering under the violence generated by Sudan’s unjust legal system and its brutal enforcement.

This violence ranges from lashing to long term imprisonments of poor women street vendors, students, and others working in the fringes of society, all of whom are regularly subjected to accusations of prostitution, intention to commit Zina, and indecent dressing. The rationale behind Sudan’s criminal code is based on vague definitions of guilt, yet it very assertively delegates the power of judgment to the enforcers to interpret it as they wish in line with the reactionary political agenda.

Intisar is currently shackled by metal chains and imprisoned in Omdurman women’s prison in Sudan together with her four month old baby, where she is being re-victimised and burdened again by the complex layers of Sudan’s heavy political baggage and unjust legal system.

Posted in SudanComments Off on On Intisar’s Zina charges and stoning sentence

SUDAN NEW NATION, LONG WAR

NOVANEWS

Hillary Clinton’s State Departm

Image result for SOUTH SUDAN LEADER WITH HILLARY CLINTON PHOTO

IMET A FEW of them in the town of Pibor last year. These battle-tested veterans had just completed two or three years of military service. They told me about the rigors of a soldier’s life, about toting AK-47s, about the circumstances that led them to take up arms. In the United States, not one of these soldiers would have met the age requirements to enlist in the Army. None were older than 16.

Rebel forces in southern Sudan began using child soldiers long before seceding from Sudan in 2011. The United States, on the other hand, passed a law in 2008 that banned providing military assistance to nations that use child soldiers. The law was called the Child Soldiers Prevention Act, or CSPA, but after South Sudan’s independence, the White House issued annual waivers that kept aid flowing to the world’s newest nation despite its use of child soldiers. President Obama stated in 2012 that the waiver that year was in “the national interest of the United States.”

The president’s move was criticized by human rights activists and others. Rep. Jeff Fortenberry, a Republican from Nebraska and the author of the CSPA, described the use of child soldiers as an “unthinkable practice.” The U.S. “must not be complicit in this practice,” he said. “The intent of the law is clear — the waiver authority should be used as a mechanism for reform, not as a way of continuing the status quo.” Because of the requirements of the law, the waivers were issued by the White House rather than the State Department, so Obama was the target of most of the criticism.

Hillary Clinton, who was secretary of state when the first waivers were issued, was apparently never asked to comment on them, and the State Department never provided any explanations about its role. Clinton had spent years vowing to defend the rights of children worldwide — in 2012, she railed against “modern-day slavery” in the introduction to a State Department report on human trafficking that took aim at the “unlawful recruitment or use of children” by armed forces. Yet she does not appear to have publicly explained her role in allowing South Sudan and other countries to receive military support despite using children as combatants. In fact, the State Department played a central role in issuing the controversial waivers, according to two sources, including a former State Department official.

Posted in USA, SudanComments Off on SUDAN NEW NATION, LONG WAR

Dr Hasan al-Turabi passes away at 84

NOVANEWS

dr-hasan-al-turabi-passes-away-at-84-5295-articles.html

by crescent-online.net

One of the leading Islamic political thinkers and activists, Dr Hasan al-Turabi passed away today in Khartoum. He was 84. A specialist in Islamic Law (he had a PhD in Islamic Law), he had contributed many books on the subject as well as served in various capacities in political office. Close to many Sudanese leaders, he eventually fell out with them ending in prison on numerous occasions.

Khartoum, crescent-online.net
Saturday March 05, 2016, 20:09 EST

One of the leading Islamic intellectuals and political activists in Sudan, Dr Hasan Abdullah al Turabi passed away today. He was 84.

After suffering a heart attack at his office in the morning, he was rushed to the Royal Care International Hospital in Khartoum. He slipped into a coma and did not recover and was pronounced dead in the evening.

Dr Turabi was a well-known scholar who specialized in Islamic Law. After studying at Khartoum University, he went to Britain and enrolled at King’s College London for a law degree. After graduating from there, he went to Sorbonne University in Paris, France for a PhD in Islamic Law.

Once back in Sudan, he exercised considerable influence in politics serving in various capacities including speaker of Parliament, Attorney General as well as Foreign Minister. He was also close to several Sudanese leaders exercising considerable influence over their policies but eventually falling out with them and ending up in prison.

He was jailed on numerous occasions the last being on January 17, 2011 for nine days when he led protests in support of the Islamic Awakening movements sweeping the Muslim East (aka the Middle East) and North Africa.

Given his political activism as well as contribution to Islamic political thought, he was well known among Islamic movement activists. However, given the racism among Arabians who consider the Sudanese as Africans (they are because they are based in Africa, just like Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Morocco and Mauritania) and not Arabs, hence they treat them with indifference and even contempt.

Dr Turabi’s intellectual contributions were not widely recognized in the Arab world even though he made important contribution to the development of Islamic political thought.

In his political career, he was initially close to Jafaar al-Numeiri who brought about a military coup in Sudan in the late seventies and early eighties. He fell out with him and was imprisoned.

Dr Turabi was also initially close to General Omar al-Bashir who also came to power through a coup and is currently the president of Sudan. He fell out with him as well although the two were politically close for nearly a decade. Power, however, is intoxicating and once Bashir consolidated his hold on power, he had no more use for Dr Turabi.

Fluent in English, French and German besides Arabic, Dr Turabi was able to reach Western audiences and intellectual circles through the media.

Since falling out with Bashir, he had been fiercely critical of his government’s policies and was the only Sudanese politician to support the International Criminal Court (ICC) warrant for Bashir’s arrest on charges of war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide.

Turabi’s political career shows the pitfalls of Islamic leaders falling into the trap of supporting dictatorships in hopes of implementing Islam from the top. Once the dictators have consolidated their grip on power, they turn against the very people that helped them propel into power.

Posted in SudanComments Off on Dr Hasan al-Turabi passes away at 84

Sudanese government collaborates with Saudi Arabia to betray Palestinian cause

NOVANEWS
Image result for HASSAN AL-BASHIR CARTOON 

HASSAN+AL-BASHIR

leak

Khartoum – A confidential letter from the Saudi Zio-Wahhabi embassy in Sudan to the Saudi capital, Riyadh, was leaked out and provoked controversy in Sudanese media. The letter purportedly repots a meeting between Sudanese Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour, Zio-Wahhabi ambassador to Sudan and an European expert on the sidelines of the Twenty-sixth African Union summit in Addis Ababa.

According to the leaked document, Saudi Zio-Wahhabi has expressed its full support for Sudan over the disputed Halayeb Triangle with Egypt, emphasizing on granting Khartoum much-needed economic and political support. On the other hand, the Sudanese government has vowed to coordinate with KSA to reframing its relations with the Palestinian factions.

Since 1902, the Halayeb Triangle is known as a disputed region between Egypt and Sudan. British colonial rule intervention in demarcation in North Africa has led to never-ending political and military tensions in the region while the both sides insist on their sovereignty on the disputed region.

Observers believe that deep divisions between Riyadh and Cairo thawed the Riyadh- Khartoum relations and changed the Zio-Wahhabi regime’s political stance toward Sudan.

Meanwhile, intelligence sources reported that above-mentioned European expert–that met Sudanese minister in Addis Ababa—was actually a high-level official of the Nazi Gestapo ‘Mossad’. The report also drew the ire of the Palestinian media as they accused Sudan of betrayal.

Posted in Palestine Affairs, Saudi Arabia, SudanComments Off on Sudanese government collaborates with Saudi Arabia to betray Palestinian cause

The International Criminal Court is unfit for purpose

NOVANEWS
Posted by: Sammi Ibrahem, Sr
Image result for The International Criminal Court LOGO
By Dr David Hoile 

The debate that has opened up regarding the International Criminal Court as a consequence of South Africa’s decision not to arrest Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir while he was attending the recent African Union summit in Johannesburg and Palestine’s successful application to join the court is long overdue.

The pursuit of justice, in the wake of wrong-doing and especially in the face of crimes against humanity and war crimes, is one of mankind’s most noble instincts. The International Criminal Court was embraced with understandable enthusiasm by a wide range of people, non-governmental organisations and governments when it came into being on 1 July 2002. Less than eight years later, however, the ICC-friendly Economist found itself obliged to publish an article about the court entitled “International justice: Courting disaster?” The court had already shown the behaviour that would come to irretrievably undermine it. Entering the fourteenth year of its existence, the International Criminal Court still finds itself unable to credibly respond to allegations of selectivity, racism, incompetence and impotence.

With hindsight, it can be seen that the Court clearly contained the seeds of its own destruction from the start. Good law evolves over decades. It is said that a camel is a horse designed by a committee. The ICC is a court designed by non-governmental organisations. The Rome statute was driven and largely drafted by non-governmental organisations within a month on a take it or leave it basis. The chief counsel of the Israeli delegation in Rome at the time noted of the NGOs that were present that “They were in on nearly every meeting. They were in on everything.” The end result was a founding statute that that even avid fans of the ICC acknowledged was seriously flawed. The resultant ICC is a judicial Frankenstein’s monster.

Many of those who initially welcomed the establishment of the court were African. They joined an institution they were assured would be independent and which would proceed without fear or favour. The body before them today, however, bears little resemblance to what was claimed of it in 2002. Despite having received almost 9,000 formal complaints about alleged war crimes in at least 139 countries, the ICC has focused exclusively on Africa, choosing to indict 36 black Africans in eight African countries. African heads of state have perhaps understandably spoken of “race hunting” by a court largely funded by Africa’s former colonial powers. Unsurprisingly, the African Union has publicly called upon its 54 members not to co-operate with the court.

The credibility of any court is its independence. The truth is that the ICC is as independent as the United Nations Security Council, and its European funders, lets it be. Far from being an independent, impartial, international court, the ICC is inextricably tied to the UN Security Council. Articles 13(b) and 16 of the ICC’s own statute grant special “prosecutorial” rights, to refer or defer an ICC investigation or prosecution, to the Security Council, or more specifically to the five Permanent members of the Security Council. Political interference was thus made part of the Court’s founding terms of reference. There is the deeply questionable situation whereby three of the five Permanent members – the United States, China and the Russian Federation – who are not members of the Court, claim to be able to refer other non-signatories to the Rome Statute to the Court when it is politically expedient for them so to do, something they have done on two occasions. The former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan has admitted that “questions of credibility will persist so long” as three of the five permanent members of the Security Council are not parties to the Statute.

The court is also inextricably tied to the European Union which provides over 60 percent of its funding. The ICC has come to be seen within Africa very much as a European-funded and directed instrument of European foreign policy. The United States has forcefully pointed out that the ICC is a kangaroo court, a travesty of justice open to political influence, and has said that no American citizen will ever come before it.

Politics aside, the sheer incompetence of the Court at a basic level has been breathtaking. The court’s proceedings thus far have often been questionable where not simply farcical. Those who brought the ICC into being appear to be more concerned with gender balance rather than competence on the bench. Its judges – some of whom have never been lawyers, let alone judges – are the result of grubbily corrupt vote-trading amongst member states. Far from securing the best legal minds in the world this produces mediocrity. There is more than a passing resemblance to FIFA in as much as at least one elected “judge” had neither law degree nor legal experience but her country had contributed handsomely to the ICC budget. The Court has produced witnesses who recanted their testimony the moment they got into the witness box, admitting that they were coached by non-governmental organisations as to what false statements to make. Dozens of other “witnesses” have similarly disavowed their “evidence”. Most recently the ICC prosecutor had to admit that one of its own star witnesses in its case against Kenyan Vice-President Ruto was “a thoroughly unreliable and incredible” witness. Much the same can be said about the ICC as a whole.

There have been numerous examples of prosecutorial misconduct, not least of which the ICC Chief Prosecutor hiding hundreds of items of exculpatory evidence, which should have ended any trial because they would have compromised the integrity of any legal process. The same Chief Prosecutor was not only seemingly unaware of the basic legal concept of presumption of innocence but also threatened to criminalise third-parties who might argue a presumption of innocence on the part of those indicted – and as yet unconvicted – by the court.

But most disturbingly of all, while claiming that preventing and ending conflict is its most important raison d’etre the ICC’s pseudo-legal blundering has derailed delicate peace processes across the continent – thereby prolonging war. One can expect more of the same from any involvement it may come to have in the Middle East.

The reality is that the International Criminal Court is a billion Euro white elephant that is simply unfit for purpose. It has been a disaster for the concept of international justice. If the answer is the International Criminal Court, it must have been a stupid question.

The writer is the author of Justice Denied: The Reality of the International Criminal Court, a 610-page study of the International Criminal Court published by the Africa Research Centre. The book is available to read or download at www.africaresearchcentre.org The author can be contacted by email atafricaresearchcentre@gmail.com.

Posted in Sudan, WorldComments Off on The International Criminal Court is unfit for purpose

South African court prevents Sudan’s al-Bashir from leaving country

NOVANEWS

Image result for al-Bashir PHOTO

al-Bashir war crimes

A high court in South Africa issued an interim order Sunday preventing Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir from leaving the country.

Al-Bashir is currently in South Africa attending the 25th African Union Summit that is underway in Johannesburg.

The South African court will decide later on Sunday whether or not to hand the Sudanese leader over to the International Criminal Court, which issued an arrest warrant against al-Bashir in 2009.

He is accused of committing war crimes and crimes against humanity in Sudan’s Darfur region.

Pretoria High Court Judge Hans Fabricus issued the order on Sunday after the Southern Africa Litigation Centre submitted an application calling for the Sudanese leader’s arrest. Amnesty International also appealed to South Africa to arrest al-Bashir.

“Al-Bashir is a fugitive from justice. If the government of President Zuma fails to arrest him, it would have done nothing, save to give succor to a leader who is accused of being complicit in the killing of hundreds of thousands of people in a conflict,” said Netsanet Belay, Amnesty International’s Research and Advocacy Director for Africa, late Friday.

“As soon as he lands in South Africa, the authorities must arrest al-Bashir and ensure that he is transferred to the International Criminal Court,” Belay said in a press release to Anadolu Agency.

South Africa is a signatory to the Rome Statute that formally established the International Criminal Court, which means they can arrest anyone accused of committing genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes or crimes of aggression.

However, experts believe it will be difficult for South Africa to effect al-Bashir’s arrest when he sets foot on their territory because he is a guest of the African Union and not the government of South Africa.

“It would be unfortunate if South Africa arrested any African head of state wanted by the International Criminal Court because they accepted to host all leaders,” international relations expert Tom Wheeler told Anadolu Agency in an earlier interview.

South African government officials have thus far refused to comment and instead requested that questions be directed to the continental body.

Posted in SudanComments Off on South African court prevents Sudan’s al-Bashir from leaving country

Shoah’s pages

www.shoah.org.uk

KEEP SHOAH UP AND RUNNING

March 2017
M T W T F S S
« Feb    
 12345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
2728293031