South African lawyers attempt to put Bashir on trial

South African judges and a group of litigation lawyers have been praised for trying to get Sudan's President Bashir to appear at the International Criminal Court - even though the state seems to have made it easy for him to get away.

The ANC has spoken out against the Hague-based International Criminal Court jan kranendonk

The Hague-based International Criminal Court (ICC)  claims that the Sudanese President Omar Hassan Ahmad Al Bashir 'committed the crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes in Darfur'.  He faces 10 charges of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes, for which a warrant of arrest was issued in 2008. When in South Africa at the  weekend for a meeting of the African Union, President Bashir was subject to the issuing of a court order to prevent him leaving the country. On Monday morning, after the President's departure from South Africa, Judge Dunstan Mlambo ruled that the government's failure to arrest him was inconsistent with the South African constitution. The South African Litigation Centre also played a prime role in challenging the behaviour of the government.

ICC opposed by ANC

However, the ruling ANC party said through a spokesman that the ICC is 'no longer useful for the purposes for which it was intended'. The African Union itself is also opposed to the ICC. Writing in Time, the founding director of the Enough Project, John Prendergast, said: 'Undoubtedly, South Africa’s judges and lawyers are this story’s heroes...Despite head of state opposition, creative lawyers, civil society groups in Africa are recapturing the best of the legacy of Nuremberg. Sources ICC and Time

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