Prosecutor: Strong case against Sudanese leader

March 3, 2009 23:37

The International Criminal Court is set to announce Wednesday whether it will issue an arrest warrant for Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir on charges of masterminding genocide in Darfur - a move that could provoke a violent backlash - and the chief prosecutor said Tuesday that there was a strong case against the Sudanese leader. "We have strong evidence against Mr. Bashir," prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo said Tuesday. "More than 30 witnesses will (testify) how he managed to control everything and we have strong evidence of his intention. I never present a case without strong evidence." An arrest warrant for al-Bashir would be a milestone for the world's first permanent war crimes tribunal, which started work in 2002 and has never before ordered the arrest of a sitting head of state. It would also put him alongside the likes of former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic and Liberian leader Charles Taylor as heads of state indicted for war crimes while in office. Both of them were forced from power and ended up on trial at international tribunals in The Hague, as did former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic who was arrested last year after 13 years as a fugitive.

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