African Press International (API)

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Posted by African Press International on August 3, 2008

(ENTEBBE) The Ugandan President today said he does not condemn the indictment by the International Criminal Court Prosecutor adding that African are to blame for not investigating Darfur crimes.

Yoweri Museveni

The ICCs prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo asked pre-trial judges on Monday to issue arrest warrants for Sudans head of state.

Ocampo filed 10 charges: three counts of genocide, five of crimes against humanity and two of murder. Judges are expected to take months to study the evidence before deciding whether to order Al-Bashirs arrest.

“The correct position of the AU should be to investigate ourselves. We dont condemn the indictments but the AU should conduct investigations itself so that we decide on our own,” Yoweri Museveni said in a press conference on Saturday.

“You may get people misbehaving. Is it Bashir who ordered them to do so?” Museveni wondered, replying to a journalists question.

“You cannot stand up and say: Dont touch Bashir because he is a president. Suppose he made those mistakes. If you take that position, you will be ignoring the right of the victims,” he added.

After talks with the Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak on July 30 in Kampala, Museveni supported the African Unions position that Bashir be given time to implement a ceasefire in the western Sudan region of Darfur.

Eight days before on July 22, Museveni held talks with the Sudanese First Vice President, Salva Kiir Mayadrit. In a joint press conference, the Ugandan President said Bashirs indictment would hinder the implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement.

Due to his bad relations with president Bashir, Museveni was the sole head of state to be met by Salva Kiir Mayadrit who is also the head of a crisis committee to deal will Darfur crimes case against the Sudanese president.

Museveni further said he believed that Sudan had also “committed war crimes by supporting the Ugandan rebel Lords Resistance Army” which fight against Museveni army since 21 year in northern Uganda

“The Lords Resistance Army led by Joseph Kony, using bases in Sudan and with the backing of Khartoum government has caused untold suffering to millions of people in northern Uganda,” he said.

Since the rejection of LRA leader, Joseph Kony, to sign a deal with Ugandan government, president Museveni steps up criticism against the Sudanese government.

On April 30, he lashed out at Khartoum saying is works to destabilise his government. He further said that U army is not fighting the rebel LRA but the Sudanese army.

In the past the Ugandan government accused regularly Khartoum of supplying arms, food and shelter to Kony in order to fight his government. But Kampala had stopped these accusations following the signing of a peace deal between Sudanese government and the former rebel SPLA in January 2005.

However in November 2006, Uganda renewed its allegations saying that Khartoum had created “Sudan LRA” and ordered it to attack civilians in the region.

Museveni took power through a military coup in 1986, three years before Bashir seized power in Khartoum.

(ST)

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Published by Chief Editor Korir, African Press International – API/ SourceSudanTribune

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