News / Africa

Sudan's Bashir Leaves Nigeria Amid Calls for Arrest

Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir walks out of a hotel in Abuja, Nigeria, July 14, 2013.
Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir walks out of a hotel in Abuja, Nigeria, July 14, 2013.
VOA News
Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir has left Nigeria after calls from human-rights activists demanding his arrest on war-crimes charges.

The Sudanese leader flew back to Khartoum on Monday, less than 24 hours after he arrived in Abuja for an African Union summit on AIDS that runs through Tuesday.

In an interview with VOA, the undersecretary of Sudan's Foreign Ministry said Bashir's departure was not related to the calls for his arrest.

"As far as we are concerned, nothing happened.  He was there, he attended the summit, and when the summit is over, he came back," said Osman.

The official, Ramatallah Osman, said the president would not have gone to Nigeria if there was a threat to his safety.

Omar al-Bashir

  • Born January 1, 1944 in Hoshe Bannaga, Sudan
  • Graduated from Sudan Military College in 1966
  • Rose through the ranks of Sudan's army
  • Came to power in a 1989 coup
  • President of Sudan since 1993
  • Subject to the first ICC case against a sitting head of state
  • ICC issued an arrest warrant for Bashir in March, 2009
While Bashir was in Nigeria, activists filed suit in the country's Federal High Court in an effort to make authorities arrest him.  

The Sudanese president is wanted by the International Criminal Court on charges of genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity in Sudan's Darfur region.

The ICC said Tuesday it had asked Nigeria to arrest Bashir and hand him over to the court's custody.

Human Rights Watch, which called Bashir's visit an affront to his victims, argued that Nigeria was obligated to arrest Bashir because of its membership in the court.

Charges Against Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir at the ICC

5 counts of crimes against humanity:
  • murder, extermination, forcible transfer, torture, rape
2 counts of war crimes:
  • intentionally directing attacks against a civilian population and pillaging
3 counts of genocide:
  • genocide by killing, genocide by causing serious bodily or mental harm and genocide by deliberately inflicting conditions of life calculated to bring about a group's physical destruction


Source: ICC

​A Nigerian presidential spokesman had indicated that authorities would not arrest Bashir.  The spokesman said Bashir came at the invitation of the African Union, which has supported Bashir's refusal to surrender to the ICC or accept the court's authority.

The ICC accuses Bashir of orchestrating crimes including murder, rape and extermination against civilians in Darfur, where rebel groups have been fighting the Bashir government since 2003.

Bashir has denied the charges and defied the ICC's warrant for his arrest, but is careful to visit countries only that are not members of the ICC or have guaranteed his safety.

Several African countries including Kenya, Chad, and Djibouti have granted entry to Bashir, while others, including South Africa, have refused to let him in.

You May Like

Philippines, Muslim Rebels Try to Salvage Peace Pact

Peace process faces major setback after botched military operation to find terrorists results in bloody gunbattle between government forces, Moro Islamic Liberation Front fighters More

Republicans Expect Long, Expensive Presidential Battle

Political strategist says eventual winner will be one who can put together strongest coalition of various conservative groups that make up Republican Party More

Video New Wheelchair Is Easier to Use, Increases Mobility

Engineers have come up with a lever-operated design that makes use of easily accessible bicycle technology More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More