Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir, who faces the risk of arrest on war crimes charges, has not been invited to next month’s African Union conference in Uganda, Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni said in a statement.
The International Criminal Court (ICC) has an indictment against Bashir over crimes in Sudan’s western Darfur region and African states that are signatories to the agreement establishing the court are obliged to arrest him.
Museveni’s office issued a statement late on Saturday saying Sudan would be represented at the conference by “other government officials” and not Bashir.
In March 2009, the Hague-based ICC issued an arrest warrant against Bashir on seven counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity in Darfur, charges that he rejects. It was the first indictment for a sitting head of state.
The year before, the court accused him of masterminding a campaign of genocide in the troubled region, prompting a round of protests from the government in Khartoum.
The African Union has sought a deferment of the arrest warrant, saying it complicates peace efforts in Darfur.
Pic: President Omar Al Bashir of Sudan