- Title: South Africa defends decision to ignore ICC's Bashir arrest warrant
- Date: 7th April 2017
- Summary: THE HAGUE, THE NETHERLANDS (APRIL 7, 2017) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF PEOPLE ENTERING INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT (ICC) SIGN FOR ICC, READING (English and French): "INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT"
- Embargoed: 21st April 2017 11:35
- Keywords: ICC International Criminal Court South Africa Omar Hassan al-Bashir arrest warrant
- Location: THE HAGUE, THE NETHERLANDS
- City: THE HAGUE, THE NETHERLANDS
- Country: Netherlands
- Topics: Crime/Law/Justice,Judicial Process/Court Cases/Court Decisions
- Reuters ID: LVA0016BEHYRR
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: EDITORS PLEASE NOTE: FILE EDIT OF OMAR HASSAN AL-BASHIR WAS SENT ON APRIL 6 WITH NUMBER 4076-WARCRIMES-SUDAN/BASHIR-FILE
South Africa told the International Criminal Court on Friday (April 7) that it believed it was under no obligation to arrest Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir during a visit two years ago even though he was subject to an ICC arrest warrant.
The ICC warrant did not outweigh a South African law that grants sitting heads of state immunity from prosecution, South African legal representative Dire Tladi told judges at a hearing to discuss Pretoria's failure to arrest al-Bashir in 2015.
The row between South Africa and the ICC over its failure to arrest al-Bashir, who is accused of genocide and war crimes, led to Pretoria's notifying the United Nations last year that it would withdraw from the court.
Al-Bashir denies the charges against him. Though Sudan is not a member of the ICC, the court has jurisdiction by virtue of a 2005 U.N. Security Council resolution referring the conflict to the Hague-based permanent war crimes court.
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