I welcome today’s history-making announcement of an arrest warrant for Sudanese President Bashir. Since 2003 I have been part of Amnesty International’s global quest to put an end to Bashir’s policies that have hurt hundreds of thousands of Darfuri civilians. Since 2005 Bashir has prevented Amnesty from entering Darfur – but still we found a way to pull of this attempt at a blindfold over our eyes- by taking to the skies to tell the stories and exposing the truth. Now one day Bashir will tell his own story in the Hague.
For the Darfuri victims of widespread rape, murder, torture and forced expulsions, today’s prosecution of Bashir is an important step to stop their suffering and move toward peace and security in this conflict-ridden region. And with this history-making gesture toward a sitting head of state, the International Criminal Court has told abusers everywhere there is no ‘get out of jail free card’ for simply being in power.
So President Bashir, stop the vitriol, drink the bitter pill and do us all a favor, and opt to have your day in Court. Because we will not rest until you do, the 2 million Amnesty International members voices globally who will assert our pressure on you, the government of Sudan, and any member of the United Nation who’s soil you may enter as a fugitive.
Check out my article on the Atlantic Community for more on Bashir’s prosecution.