Won't extradite Bashir, say Sudan's military rulers

Updated: Apr 13, 2019, 09:38 IST | Agencies

Demonstrators demanded a civilian body to lead the transition to democracy and bring an end to the multiple conflicts which have pushed the country into worsening poverty

Won't extradite Bashir, say Sudan's military rulers
Omar al-Bashir

Sudan's ousted president Omar al-Bashir, who is wanted by the International Criminal Court on charges of genocide and war crimes, won't be extradited, country's new military rulers said on Friday. "Bashir is currently in custody," the head of the military council's political committee, Lieutenant General Omar Zain al-Abdin, told a news conference.

"We as a military council, will not deliver Bashir abroad during our period" in office, Abdin said when asked about the ICC arrest warrant. Meanwhile, Sudanese protesters, angry that army commanders have taken control after removing Bashir in a palace coup, defied a night-time curfew to keep up four months of mass demonstrations on Friday.

Protest leaders dismissed the transitional military council formed by top brass as the "same old faces" from the old regime which had ruled the country with an iron fist for three decades.

Demonstrators demanded a civilian body to lead the transition to democracy and bring an end to the multiple conflicts which have pushed the country into worsening poverty. Most shops and offices were closed on Friday which is the day of prayer and rest in Sudan.

The US called on the military council "to exercise restraint and to allow space for civilian participation within the government". The European Union urged the army to carry out a "swift" handover to civilian rule.

Pope made the unprecedented gesture for peace. Pic/AFP
Pope made the unprecedented gesture for peace. Pic/AFP

Pope kisses feet of South Sudan leaders
Pope Francis kissed the feet of South Sudan's rival leaders, in an unprecedented act of humbleness to enco-urage them to strengthen the African country's faltering peace process.

At the end of a retreat in the Vatican for the African leaders, the pope asked South Sudan's president and opposition leader to proceed with the peace agreement despite growing difficulties. Then he got down on his knees and kissed the their feet on Thursday. The pope has never performed such a show of deference to political leaders.

"I express my heartfelt hope that hostilities will finally cease, that the armistice will be respected, that political and ethnic divisions will be surmounted, and that there will be a lasting peace for the common good of all those citizens who dream of beginning to build the nation," the pope said.

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