Sudan has announced that it will open an inquiry into the crimes committed in Darfur by former President Omar al-Bashir as well as 51 members of his regime, who have been accused of committing genocide and war crimes.
The inquiry will examine the crimes committed in Darfur since 2003. In 2009 and 2010, the international criminal court (ICC) issued an arrest for al-Bashir on grounds of genocide, and crimes against humanity in Darfur. The UN claims that the conflict killed an estimated 300,000 people and displaced a further 2.5 million.
The war in Darfur began in 2003 when ethnic minority rebels took to arms against a government which they maintained had oppressed them.
In April al-Bashir was overthrown by the army after 30-years of his rule. This is the first investigation to be launched since his ousting. Al-Bashir is currently imprisoned on grounds of corruption and the ICC is demanding he stand trial for his role in the Darfur conflict. Despite these calls from the ICC the former President has not been sent to the Hague.
The governor of southern Sudan, Ahmed Haroun has also been charged
Haroun, who was governor of South Kordofan, is also wanted by the ICC on war crimes charges.
The government is accused of committed of targeting employing a scorched earth policy and of raping, killing civilians as well as looting and burning villages.
The International Federation for Human Rights has called upon the Sudanese transitional government to end the “reign of impunity” which has plagued Darfur.
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