Accessibility links

Sudanese President Criticizes UN Security Council, ICC


Sudan's president has slammed the United Nations Security Council for asking the International Criminal Court to open an investigation into war crimes in the Darfur region.

Speaking at the opening of the Arab League summit in Doha Monday, Omar al-Bashir accused the Security Council of corruption.

He also called for the ICC to freeze its arrest warrant against him, and to annul the warrant's legal consequences.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad also urged Arab leaders in Doha to reject the warrant for Mr. Bashir, who is accused of war crimes.

Earlier at the summit, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called the security situation in Darfur volatile.

He said he remains extremely concerned about Sudan's decision to expel aid agencies from the area, as local ministries are still unable to fill the gap.

Mr. Bashir dismissed the criticism, saying his government had expelled only 15 of 118 organizations that provided just 4.5 percent of the support to the people of Darfur.

He accused the 15 organizations of working with the ICC.

Also at the summit Monday, Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi insulted Saudi King Abdullah, stirring long-simmering tensions between the leaders.

Mr. Gadhafi said "it has been six years" that the king has been avoiding confrontation, and that the Saudi leader was made by Britain and protected by the Americans.

The Libyan leader then took a more conciliatory tone, saying he would be willing to visit Saudi Arabia, and receive a visit from King Abdullah.

During this week's Arab League summit, officials also will be debating the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and Iran's growing influence in the region.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.

XS
SM
MD
LG