Security Council: Statement by Ambassador Wittig in a briefing on Darfur/Sudan (ICC)
(Security Council: Statement as delivered by Ambassador Wittig in a briefing on Darfur/sudan (ICC))
Since this is the last time the Prosecutor is addressing the Council I would like to start by thanking you, Mr. Ocampo, not only for your report and statement today, but for your many years of hard work and dedication to international justice. Your contribution has been instrumental in the efforts undertaken by the International Criminal Court to bring perpetrators of atrocities committed in various parts of the world to Justice. And we are of course very grateful to you for your work in following-up to Council resolutions 1593 (2005) and 1970 (2011) which referred the situations in Darfur and Libya respectively to the International Criminal Court. As you are leaving your present function, we wish you all the best for your future.
We noted the arrest warrant issued against Mr. Abdel Raheem Muhammad Hussain, the current Sudanese Minister of Defence, on 1 March, and we understand the deep sense of frustration expressed in the Prosecutor’s report before us. Ahmad Harun, indicted for war crimes and crimes against humanity, is Governor of South Kordofan. Ali Kushayb, indicted for war crimes and crimes against humanity, is at large in Sudan. And President Omar Hassan Al-Bashir, indicted for war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide, has been re-elected and defies the authority of the Council. Unfortunately , some of the indictees continue to incite Government forces to commit atrocities in defiance of the Council’s resolutions, most lately resolution 2035 of 17 February. In short: Other than in the case of Libya, open conflict and therefore impunity continues to characterize the situation in Sudan.
In light of this deplorable situation, I would like to reiterate that it is the prime responsibility of the Government of Sudan to comply with the Council’s resolutions, to cooperate with the Court, and to surrender the indicted persons to the authority of the Court. As the Prosecutor’s report makes clear, no such will to cooperate currently exists within the relevant levels of the Government of Sudan. However, this does not mean that justice will not be done at some point in time. Eventually, the Sudanese will have to decide what is ultimately the best for them and their country. The recent sentencing of Charles Taylor by the Special Court on Sierra Leone to 50 years in prison is a clear sign that the “age of accountability” is neither a dream nor a mere concept, but is becoming a reality. We must not lessen in our determination to foster this reality. Perpetrators of genocide, crimes against humanity and other most serious crimes will not be able to avoid justice.
Notwithstanding Sudan’s prime responsibility to cooperate, we have taken full note of the Court’s findings regarding non-cooperation of both Malawi and Chad when visited by President Bashir. The non-execution of Court requests severely affects its ability to fulfil its mandate. Germany therefore reiterates its call upon all States Parties of the ICC to fully honour their obligations under the Rome Statute, in particular the obligation to cooperate and to execute any warrant of arrest issued by the Court. We also support on-going action by the ICC Assembly of States Parties to encourage full cooperation with the Court.
I thank you.