The International Crimes Division of the High Court in Kampala has dismissed an application by a local activist group to arrest visiting Sudan president Omar al-Bashir.
Yesterday (Wednesday), Justice Moses Mukiibi also the head of the ICD court declined to order for the arrest of Bashir on grounds that it was unnecessary.
“Uganda is awaiting sanctions by the UN security council for failing to arrest President Bashir in May last year. Therefore, it is unnecessary to issue an immediate arrest warrant against president Bashir,” Mukiibi ruled. Bashir left Uganda on Tuesday.
Last year, ICC referred Uganda to the UN Security Council to take measures against it over failure to arrest Bashir during his visit in the country.
Bashir had come to Uganda to attend the swearing in ceremony of President Yoweri Museveni.
Uganda and a number of African states including South Africa have declined to arrest Bashir. They argue that the court is only targeting countries in Africa.
Bashir was indicted by the ICC in 2009 but has since denied the charges.
Bashir is wanted by ICC on suspicion of masterminding atrocities including genocide in the breakaway Darfur region of western Sudan between 2003 and 2008. Thousands of people allegedly lost lives.
Uganda victims Foundation through its lawyer Nicholas Opio wanted the court to issue a standing warrant of arrest against president Bashir.
According to Opio, Uganda as a member of the war crimes court is obliged to carry out ICC arrest warrants.
The case was against the Attorney General and Justice Minister Maj (rtd) Kahinda Otafiire.
They also wanted court to declare that the justice minister and the government acted against the Uganda ‘s will and obligations of the international treaties by failing to arrest Bashir for two times.
However, hearing of the main application did not proceed yesterday because the Attorney General William Byaruhanga had not yet filed his response.
Hearing of the main suit was adjourned to the 12th of December.
Source: The New Vision News https://www.newvision.co.ug/new_vision/news/1465830/court-dismisses-arrest-bashir