The International Criminal Court (ICC) urged Sudan on Wednesday to hand over former leader Omar al-Bashir to stand trial for mass killings in the Darfur region.
Fatou Bensouda, prosecutor of the ICC, said she is ready to make sure all suspects in the Darfur killings “face an independent, impartial justice.”
The UN estimates more than 300,000 people died and 2.5 million were displaced as a result of the fighting in Darfur since 2003
“Now is the time for the people of Sudan to choose law over impunity and ensure that [court] suspects in the Darfur situation finally face justice in a court of law,” Bensouda told the UN Security Council.
— Int'l Criminal Court (@IntlCrimCourt) June 19, 2019
The UN estimates more than 300,000 people died and 2.5 million were displaced as a result of the fighting in Darfur since 2003.
Military leaders now in control of Sudan have not transferred Bashir to the ICC, and he has been facing trial in Khartoum on corruption charges.
Bensouda said that Sudan “is now at a crossroads with the opportunity to depart from its previous policy of complete non-cooperation.”
“Continued impunity is not an option,” she said. “The victims of the Darfur situation deserve to finally have their day in court.”
Read more: Hope for Sudan, Omar al Bashir before court
Last week, the UN suspended the transfer of sites to the control of Sudan’s Transitional Military Council (TMC), citing the country’s Rapid Support Forces are made up of groups accused of human rights abuses.
Sudanese protesters began a nationwide civil disobedience campaign Sunday as part of pressures on the ruling TMC to hand over power to a civilian government.
More than 100 people have been killed since June 3 when the government forces broke up the sit-in by forces.
Anadolu with additional input by GVS News Desk