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123 individuals and organisations, including HART, have written to Ban Ki-Moon regarding the recent announcement by the ICC Chief Prosecutor that she is suspending new investigations in the cases of President al Bashir and those Sudanese officials indicted for genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity.
The letter states that the suspension of investigations “has already had the unfortunate consequence of making those responsible for atrocities in Sudan believe that they have won the moral battle. They now compute that killing, bombing, raping, burning, intimidating, and looting can be continued with impunity.”
The signatories to the letter share the Chief Prosecutor’s frustrations around the lack of engagement by the UN Security Council, but fear that this recent action “will only serve to embolden the Sudanese armed forces and their proxies”.
The letter highlights that “The UN Security Council has had many opportunities to enforce numerous resolutions on Darfur from 2004 onward concerned with pressing the Sudanese government to stop bombing and attacking its own unarmed civilians. However, the Security Council has consistently refrained from enforcing resolutions giving permission to impose targeted smart sanctions and travel bans on the architects of the ethnic cleansing in Darfur. Consequently, those indicted by the ICC have continued to travel without fear of arrest; their assets could have been frozen, according to the UNSC’s resolutions, and yet no action has been taken.”
It goes on to recommend that “if the UNSC is to have any credibility in future it must begin to enforce smart targeted sanctions, asset freezes and travel bans on those indicted by the ICC.”
Download the full text of the letter and list of signatories below.