Some residents in Sudan's restive Darfur region are
reportedly expressing concerns that growing debate about the possible
indictment of President Omar Hassan al-Bashir for war crimes could worsen
their plight. The residents claim they could not only be denied much needed
help from the international community, but also that peace and security in the
area could be seriously jeopardized. This comes after the Darfur rebel Justice
and Equality Movement accused the African Union of bias after it urged the UN
Security Council to suspend a proposed arrest warrant against President Bashir.
reportedly said they would no longer recognize AU efforts to mediate a peace
process aimed at resolving the Darfur crisis. But the former rebel Sudan
People's Liberation Movement (SPLM) sharply differed, saying there is need to
find a solution to the Darfur crisis. Yasser Arman is the Deputy
SPLM Secretary General. He tells reporter Peter Clottey from the capital,
Khartoum that his group is calling for cooperation between Sudan and the
International Criminal Court process.
"In the first place the SPLM
had earlier on a clear position on this indictment process that we are calling
for cooperation on the legal aspects with the ICC. At the same time we can see
very clearly this situation. If it is not well managed, it could and it can
hurt the peace and stability in Sudan. And the most important thing is for all
of us finding a fair and a just solution for the Darfur crisis, which is the
source of all the other consequences," Arman pointed out.
He said the SPLM see the
crisis in Darfur as political, which needs an urgent solution.
"We think the Darfur crisis
is a political crisis and is part of the socio-economic process through
cultural and political marginalization of wider segments of the Sudanese
society. The general characteristics of the Darfur problem are the same as in
South Sudan and Eastern Sudan, and it needs a fair and just peaceful
settlement," he said.
Arman said there was need
not to be sidetracked on the resolution of the Darfur crisis after news of the
indictment of President Bashir.
"I believe the most
important thing is to focus on how to resolve the issue of Darfur itself and
how to strike a balance between justice and stability and the resolution of the
crisis in Darfur as a primary and fundamental issue for everybody. Those issues
are interrelated, the justice, the stability, democracy. Implementing the CPA
(Comprehensive Peace Agreement) is also important. How to move this situation
forward and how to get a perfect comprehensive outlook of the present situation
in Sudan, it is very important, and we should not be selective on all the other
aspects," Arman pointed out.
He said the SPLM would do
all it can to have the crisis in Darfur resolved.
"As you know, the chairman
of the SPLM, General Salva Kiir, is also the chairman of the crisis management
committee, and this committee is doing a lot in focusing the attention on a
peaceful negotiated settlement with all these stakeholders," he noted.
Sudanese government reportedly vowed Tuesday to protect its sovereignty,
reiterating that the indictment of President Omar al-Bashir by the
International Criminal Court (ICC) will jeopardize the country's entire peace