African member countries of the International Criminal Court (ICC) will not pull out of the body despite their opposition to its indictment of the Sudanese President, diplomatic sources say.
The ICC has issued an arrest warrant for President Omar Hassan al-Bashir to face charges of war crimes carried out during almost six years of fighting in
They are meeting in
“They will reach a consensus and ask for the warrant against al-Bashir to be deferred for some time,” a diplomat told Reuters. “But an en masse withdrawal will not happen,” he added.
Diplomats told Reuters only
An African Union (AU) heads of state meeting in February decided the continent’s ICC members should consider such a move.
The AU has said the warrant will compromise peace efforts in
“The pursuit of peace can be deadly impacted upon if players including a head of state, are denied even the fundamental presumption of innocence,” said AU Peace and Security Commissioner Ramtane Lamara.
Former South African President Thabo Mbeki is chairing an AU panel charged with helping to bring peace to
International experts say 200 000 people have died and more than 2.5 million have been driven from their homes in the remote western region since mostly non-Arab rebels took up arms against the government in 2003.
“The situation is obviously different from what the ICC prosecutor described last Friday before the UN Security Council as ‘ongoing extermination of civilians’,” he said.
Bashir has travelled to several countries that are not members of the ICC since the warrant was issued in March.
The leader of the oil-exporting nation has visited