Sudan will hand over its former president, Omar al-Bashir, to the International Criminal Court to be tried on genocide and war-crimes charges, Sudanese officials said Tuesday.
Al-Bashir, 76, was toppled amid domestic protests in 2019 after 30 years in power, and has been incarcerated in Khartoum since. He is wanted by the ICC for his role in the Sudanese government’s killing of as many as 300,000 people and displacement of millions more during the early 2000s conflict in the Darfur region.
Sudan had until now refused to turn al-Bashir over to the ICC in The Hague, where he is wanted on three counts of genocide, five counts of crimes against humanity, and two counts of war crimes as detailed in warrants for his arrest issued in 2009 and 2010. But the country’s transitional government has since agreed as a term of an agreement between Sudan’s government and Darfur rebels to turn over those sought for prosecution by the ICC, according to Mohammed al-Ta’ashy, a member of the government.
“We agreed that everyone who had arrest warrants issued against them will appear before the ICC. I’m saying it very clearly,” al-Ta’ashy said. “We can only achieve justice if we heal the wounds with justice itself. We cannot escape from confronting that.”
The ICC said it has not yet received confirmation that al-Bashir will be handed over.
“We are aware and following the news in relation to Mr. al-Bashir. We have no official confirmation on our side at this moment,” ICC spokesman Fadi El Abdallah told CNN.