Press and Information Release
Once more, African leaders have confirmed solidarity with the Sudan when President Bashir participated in the AU 27th Summit (Kigali 10-18 July). The arrest warrant by the ICC did not stop the President from visiting Egypt, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, India, China, Uganda, Djibouti, Indonesia and Nigeria. The Kigali summit renewed its commitment to the African consensus of rejecting the International Criminal Court's selective targeting of African leaders. The Rwandan Minister of Foreign Affairs dismissed the ICC's contacts about President Bashir's visit as "a mere distraction". Added to that, the AU's Economic and Social Cultural Council Advisory body issued a statement that the ICC is not independent but politicised.
The double standards of the ICC were very clear since its foundation statutes (Rome 1998) excluded the "crime of aggression" from its remit in a clear signal of intention to protect aggressive major powers. Attempts to include the crime of aggression in Kampala Conference (2010) were thwarted. The President of the ICC, Judge Sang-Hyun Song told the UN General Assembly in October 2009: "this judicial institution operates within a political world." The political world has -as is well known - got its rules and codes. L. Moreno-Ocampo, the ICC's first prosecutor explained them to the Financial Times (Sept 2011) by saying that Western countries changed tunes according to their interests. "The [Western] politicians need a brave dog to create prevention, but not so brave it bites their own hands." In a significant development that demonstrates the validity of the criticism that cites the validity of the views of those who are suspicious of the unaccountable, unelected, ICC, the US Congress passed in 2002, the American Service Members' Protection Act (ASPA) that authorises the President to use all means to free any US personnel held by the ICC. Moreover, the Darfur investigation which culminated in the trumped up case against President Bashir was referred to the ICC by a Security Council in which the majority of the permanent members the US, China and Russia (3 out of 5) did not recognise the ICC or sign its statutes. This devalued the standards of the Security Council.
Furthermore, the US academic David Bosco has provided evidence of what L. Moreno-Ocampo was referring to. In his book, ...
The current news coverage of the latest bribing scandal to rock the ICC should remind us of the fact that the short history of this court has known several scandals that were swept under the carpet by the sympathetic mainstream media in the West. The first was the sexual harassment case against the first Prosecutor L. Moreno Ocampo.
In a travesty of legal practice, he sat on a disciplinary board which considered accusations against him by a Swedish court employee. When the employee lodged a complaint, the International Labour Organisation judged in his favour and the ICC had to pay a fine. The Legal editor of the Daily Telegraph, J. Rosenberg, was the leading voice to call for Mr.Moreno Ocampo's resignation(7 July 2008);but the man had powerful backers and carried on. The second was Mr Moreno-Ocampo's admission that he actually planned to hijack a plane in (2008) in order to arrest Ahmed Haroun (the then Governor of South Kordofan) Hijacking is a major crime. The fact that the attempt failed does not reduce its gravity. A man with an outlaw mindset at the helm of legal proceedings at an international level.