Interestingly, the judges had refused to indict Bashir for alleged genocide, ignoring the application by ICC prosecutor, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, filed last year.
When Chadian President Idriss Deby visited Khartoum in mid-February and was embraced by President Omar al-Bashir of Sudan, the event was a great surprise to everyone familiar with the nature of hostility between the two countries...
Under the terms of a peace agreement signed in 2005 between northern and southern Sudan, the latter is expected to vote for secession in a referendum in 2011. But the traditional competition between nomadic groups in the south for the best cattle and grazing land has developed into a serious ethnic conflict in recent months, so the region could be too unstable to hold either the elections due next year or the referendum.
When rebel groups centred in Sudan's Darfur region attacked Chad's capital, Ndajamena, on February 2 it looked as if the long, corrupt and oppressive rule of presidentIdriss Deby (pic) might be ending, but Chad was not so lucky. As a report in the Economist put it, “Chad is one of Africa's poorest and least stable countries and Mr Deby one of the continent's worst presidents.”
Many people reading the recent news from Darfur may be confused. On October 25, just days before peace talks on the conflict in Darfur were due to begin in Libya, anti-government rebels in Darfur were reported to have attacked oil installations in the neighbouring region of Kardofan, kidnapping two foreigners and warning other foreign oil workers that they had a week to leave the country or they would face similar attacks. The start of the talks in Sirte were then delayed because rebel groups refused to take part.
At the end of April, western human rights and charitable bodies organized a series of events to mark the fourth anniversary of the outbreak of fighting in the Darfur region of western Sudan. During this period, Darfur has become a by-word for human tragedy, with the Sudanese government of Omar Bashir being blamed for perpetrating a “genocide” against “African” tribes-people in the region, with the help of the notorious Janjaweed, described as militants belonging to “Arab” tribes, supported and equipped by the Sudanese government.
For some time Sudan has been under great pressure from the UN and the ‘international community’ (led by the US) to grant independence, not merely self-rule, to its constituent regions, such as Darfur. The pressure has already forced Khartoum to grant Southern Sudan self-rule and the right to choose between full independence and membership of an federal Sudanese state, and has induced the rebel groups in Darfur to abandon the peace agreements they signed with Khartoum
The issue of Darfur dominated the recent UN summit in New York as it did the other two sessions held on the sidelines by African and Arab leaders gathered there. Because the term of the 7,000-strong African Union force in Darfur was due to end on September 30, the main question was whether to send UN peacekeepers to replace it – as the US and its allies demanded but the Sudanese president rejected – or to extend the term of the AU mission and strengthen it.
As international pressure on Sudan to admit UN peacekeepers in Darfur appeared to flounder by mid-August, the US and Britain – the two main powers behind the scheme intensified their effort to break the resolve of president Omar Hassan al-Bashir to resist their ill-disguised plot to prepare for the eventual separation of the Western region from the rest of Sudan.
The fighting in Darfur has taken a new turn since the Sudan Liberation Army (SLA) split up into two factions that are now locked in battle with each other, ending their unity against the Sudanese army.
UN secretary general Kofi Annan, under pressure from the US and zionist-Christian groups, dispatched Lakhdar Brahimi to Sudan on May 25 to coordinate the deployment of UN peacekeeping troops in Darfur after the Darfur accord signed in Abuja, capital of Nigeria, on May 5.
The peace deal signed last January for which the late John Garang fought for more than two decades secures for southern Sudan the right to secede, which it will exercise through a referendum to be held in six years’ time. There is little doubt that Garang would have insisted on the referendum being held, had he lived, and that the southerners will vote for secession because of their strong hostility towards the north and their backers’ keenness to have the “largest Muslim-dominated country in Africa” broken up.
Anti-Sudan propaganda in the West has reached such a pitch that even a movie, Hotel Rwanda, a fictional account of the Rwandan genocide, is being used to create the impression that a similar genocide is being perpetrated in Darfur.
The United States, which last September accused Sudan of committing genocide in the Western region of Darfur, is now charging it with “crimes against humanity” and has even dropped its usual assertion that the Sudanese government has the ability to control the so-called Arab Janjaweed militia, who had been accused of arming to kill Africans in Darfur.
What do Sudan and Syria have in common apart from being two Muslim countries that are also members of the Arab League? Each is the victim of mounting and relentless pressure from the West and their Arab allies, the UN and the international media, over their internal and regional policies, which they are required to abandon in the interests of those targeting them...
Sudan is the largest country in Africa, its western region of Darfur alone being larger than France; the “Islamic and Arab” government of president Omar Hassan al-Bashir is financing and arming the Janjaweed– the “Arab” militia which is allegedly ethnically cleansing the “African” tribes in that region...
The continuing support for the rebels in Darfur and the relentless blame of the Sudanese government and so-called "Janjaweed militias" for the mayhem by the ‘international community' may reasonably be held responsible for the failure of peace in Sudan's eastern region, which has been in the grip of unrest for a year...
At a time when the Western media and establishment are presenting the tragedy in Darfur as the fault of ‘Arab’ militias attacking indigenous African communities, and the US government is seeking to exploit the crisis to score brownie points at home and internationally...