Join us in the launch of the BashirWatch Campaign to end impunity!
Over the past year, the IJP has been working on “Chasing Bashir” to put a stop to Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir’s continued travels around the world with impunity and to bring him and the other accused in the Darfur situation before the International Criminal Court (ICC). Now, we are pleased to announce the launch of the BashirWatch Campaign, a worldwide campaign together with Aegis Trust, the Coalition for the ICC, Physicians for Human Rights, United to End Genocide and other NGOs dedicated to international justice.
BashirWatch is a multifaceted advocacy campaign that aims to end the decade-long impunity enjoyed by Bashir and three other Sudanese officials—Ahmad Muhammad Harun, Ali Muhammad Ali Abd-Al-Rahman, and Abdel Raheem Muhammad Hussein—wanted by the ICC for genocide, war crimes, and/or crimes against humanity committed in Darfur. To achieve this goal, the campaign seeks to galvanize worldwide action from global citizens to press their governments and the entire international community, especially in Africa and the Middle East, to strongly call for members of the ICC and member states of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) who referred the case to the Hague to follow through with their legal obligation and enforce the arrest warrants for Bashir and others.
Follow the campaign at www.bashirwatch.org! It features in-depth analysis of the issues, a collection of endorsements from various organizations, an international rapid response mechanism to protest and stop Bashir’s travels, and much more!
BashirWatch was developed over several months of consultation among a core group of organizations that came together to analyze gaps in advocacy, develop a coherent strategy, and build a campaign that will create sustained action for Bashir’s arrest. The core group recognizes the need to complement ongoing efforts and capitalize on the momentum to attract global attention towards concrete steps. The overall objective is to ensure that impunity is no longer an option, that justice prevails, and that the freedom and privileges of President Bashir and others are revoked until they answer for their alleged crimes. This will be done by using the BashirWatch website as a central point for sharing news of Bashir’s potential travels and for coordinating protest letters and events to pressure those countries that would consider welcoming Bashir and the other wanted Sudanese officials without arresting him.
President Bashir stands accused of the world’s most heinous crimes—genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity—for his part in killing about 300,000 men, women, and children in Darfur and forcing millions more to leave their homes with no place to go. The Darfur genocide perpetuated by Bashir and his regime was the same crime of genocide that we, as the international community, said would never happen again. It sparked unprecedented attention from celebrities, politicians, students, lawyers, and others, who came together to speak out and demand that the violence end, that the criminals see their day in court, and that justice be done for the millions of victims.
Persistent advocacy led to notable victories culminating in the decision by the UNSC to refer the situation in Darfur to the ICC in 2005, and four years later, the ICC’s issuance of warrants of arrest for President Bashir, Ahmad Muhammad Harun, and Ali Muhammad Ali Abd-Al-Rahman, as well as rebels also wanted for the alleged crimes committed in Darfur. In the same year, the Comprehensive Peace Agreement was signed between the Sudanese People’s Liberation Movement and the Government of Sudan as people felt hopeful that the violence would end.
But a decade since the outbreak of genocide, violence in Darfur continues and millions remain displaced and fearful of returning home while President Bashir and the other alleged perpetrators continue to live freely. Bashir and his regime continue their crimes in other parts of Sudan, notably in South Kordofan and Blue Nile where many other people have been displaced or severely affected by violence.
It has been four years since the ICC issued the first warrant of arrest for President Bashir. Yet, he and three other Sudanese leaders remain fugitives of justice. The timing could not be more appropriate to renew our efforts towards justice and peace.
States such as Chad have consistently ignored their responsibilities under the Rome Statute by welcoming President Bashir within their country instead of arresting him. Non-state parties, like Egypt and Libya, with aspirations for democracy and justice have also hosted the Sudanese leader in their territories. The time is now to raise awareness of the plight of the people in Darfur and other parts of Sudan, to pressure the international community and members of the ICC who have not complied to their legal obligations, to fight justice, and to follow in the footsteps of Malawi, Kenya, and Zambia, who have said they would arrest Bashir if he were to travel to their countries.
Please join us in these efforts!
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