THE HAGUE, Netherlands (CNN) — The chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court has filed genocide charges against Sudan’s president for a five-year campaign of violence in Darfur.
Luis Moreno-Ocampo on Monday urged a three-judge panel to issue an arrest warrant for President Omar Hassan al-Bashir to prevent the deaths of about 2.5 million people forced from their homes in the war-torn region of Darfur and who are still under attack from government-backed Janjaweed militia.
The five charges against al-Bashir include masterminding attempts to wipe out African tribes in the war-torn region with a campaign of murder, rape and deportation.
In an exclusive interview with CNN’s Nic Robertson in the Dutch city of The Hague, the prosecutor said: “After three years I have strong evidence that al-Bashir is committing a genocide. I cannot be blackmailed, I cannot yield. Silence never helped the victims. Silence helped the perpetrators. The prosecutor should not be silent.”
The judges must now decide whether to issue the warrant, although they have approved all 11 of Moreno-Ocampo’s previous submissions to the court.