February 12, 2013

His Excellency Hon. Idriss Deby

President of the Republic of Chad

 

Your Excellency,

We, the undersigned organizations, are seriously concerned over reports of a possible visit to Chad by Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir—wanted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) on charges of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes to attend the Community of Sahel-Saharan summit to be held on February 16, 2013 in Ndjamena.

President al-Bashir is the subject of two arrest warrants issued by the ICC. Permitting President al-Bashir to visit Chad without executing these warrants would run counter to Chad’s obligations as a state party to the Rome Statute of the ICC, in particular Articles 86 and 89(1). It would also send damaging signals to victims of mass atrocities in Darfur and globally, and undermine Chad’s credibility on issues of justice and accountability.

The Chadian government participated in the eleventh session of the ICC Assembly of States Parties (ASP) held in The Hague, during which states discussed the importance of strengthening efforts to ensure full and effective cooperation with the Court and expressed their political and diplomatic support. Avoiding situations of non-cooperation was a topic featured prominently in official statements at the tenth and eleventh sessions of the ASP.

Recent events point to a readiness on the part of states to uphold their obligations under the ICC treaty and to avoid situations of non-cooperation with the Court. Most recently, Malawi pulled out of hosting a recent African Union (AU) summit in light of the AU’s insistence that al-Bashir attend the meeting. In the past years, President al-Bashir cancelled a scheduled trip to the Central African Republic for independence celebrations in Bangui in December 2010 amid calls for his arrest, and his anticipated travel to Kenya was forestalled in October 2010 with the relocation of a meeting of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development from Nairobi to Addis Ababa. President al-Bashir’s curtailed travel sends a strong signal that, as a suspected perpetrator of the worst crimes known to humankind, he is not a welcome guest and should be arrested to face justice before the ICC.

Already on December 13, 2011, following the visit of President Al-Bashir to Chad, ICC judges concluded that Chad failed to cooperate with the court and referred the matter to the UN Security Council.

For all of these reasons, we urge the Chadian government to clearly affirm its commitment to cooperate with the ICC, as states such as South Africa, Uganda and Botswana, and Malawi have already done, and clarify that should President al-Bashir

enter Chad, he will be arrested. This would be an important way to demonstrate respect for victims of the crimes committed, along with Chad’s commitment to end impunity.

Sincerely,

c.c. H.E. Ambassador Ahmad Allam-mi, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Chad to the United Nations

Signature list

 

1. ACADHOSHA asbl (Action des Chrétiens Activistes des Droits de l'Homme à Shabunda), Democratic Republic of the Congo

2. Actions Humanitaires Justice pour les Victimes (AHJV), Democratic Republic of the Congo

3. Advocates for Public International Law Uganda (APILU), Uganda

4. African Center for Justice & Peace Studies, Sudan

5. Africa Centre for Open Governance (AfriCOG), Kenya

6. Arry Organization, Sudan

7. Avocats Sans Frontieres, Belgium

8. Carrefour Juridique Culturel (CAJUC), Democratic Republic of the Congo

9. Center for Euro-Atlantic Studies, Serbia

10. Centre for Human Rights and Rehabilitation (CHRR), Malawi

11. Center for Media Studies and Peacebuilding (CEMESP-Liberia), Liberia

12. Civil Resource Development and Documentation Centre (CIRDDOC), Nigeria

13. Coalition Nationale pour la Cour penale internationale (CN-CPI/RDC), Democratic Republic of the Congo

14. Coalition on Violence Against Women (COVAW), Kenya

15. Collectif des Auxiliaires Liberaux de la Justice (CALIJ), Democratic Republic of the Congo

16. Collectif des ONG pour la Promotion de la Justice (COPJ), Democratic Republic of the Congo

17. Coalition for the International Criminal Court, with offices in Benin and the DRC

18. Community Empowerment for Progress Organization (CEPO), Republic of South Sudan

19. Darfur Solidarity Group, South Africa

20. Fondation Congolaise pour la Promotion des Droits humains et la Paix (FOCDP), Democratic Republic of the Congo

21. Forum des Femmes pour l'Appropriation de la Resolution 1325 (FOFAP-1325), Democratic Republic of the Congo

22. International Center Policy and Conflict in Africa (ICPC) Kenya

23. Kenya Human Rights Commission, Kenya

24. Kenyans for Peace with Truth and Justice (KPTJ), Kenya

25. Kituo cha Sheria: The Centre for Legal Empowerment, Kenya

26. Ligue pour la Promotion et le Developpement Integral de la Femme et de

l'Enfant (LIPRODIFE), Democratic Republic of the Congo

27. Lira NGO Forum, Uganda

28. Le Mouvement pour la Defense des Droits de L'Homme et D'Action Humanitaire (MDDH), France

29. La Rencontre africaine pour la défense des droits de l'homme (RADDHO), Senegal

30. Sierra Leone Coalition for the ICC, Sierra Leone

31. South Sudan Human Rights Defenders Network (SSHRDN), Republic of South Sudan

32. Southern Africa Litigation Centre, South Africa

33. Synergie pour la Protection des Defenseurs des Droits Humains (SYPRODH), Democratic Republic of the Congo

34. Use Your Voice to Stop Genocide, USA

35. Cameroon Coalition for the ICC, Cameroon

36. World Federation of United Nations Associations, USA

37. Amuria District Development Agency – ADDA, Uganda

38. United to End Genocide, USA

39. The Kenyan section of the International Commission of Jurists, Kenya

40. Uganda Victims Foundation, Uganda

41. L'Association pour les Droits de l'Homme et l'Univers Carcéral (ADHUC), Democratic Republic of the Congo

42. Lira NGO Forum, Uganda

43. The South Sudan Law Society (SSLS), South Sudan

44. Human Rights Watch, with offices in the DRC, Kenya, Rwanda, and South Africa

45. Humanity Is Us, USA

46. Kumi Human Rights Initiative (KHRI), Uganda

47. Human Rights Network Uganda (HURINET), Uganda

48. Ugandan Coalition for the ICC, Uganda

49. Arry Organization for Human Rights and Development, USA/Egypt

50. Fédération Internationale des Droits de l’Homme, with offices in Kenya

51. Amnesty International USA

52. Human Rights & Advocacy Network for Democracy (HAND)

53. Operation Broken Silence, USA

54. Coalition Nationale pour la Cour Pénale Internationale-RDC (CN-CPI/RDC), Democratic Republic of the Congo

55. International Crime in Africa Programme, Institute for Security Studies, Afrique du Sud

56. STAND Canada

57. The Institute on Religion and Democracy, USA

58. Fondation Congolaise pour la Promotion des Droits humains et la Paix (FOCDP), Democratic Republic of the Congo

59. GlobalSolutions.org, USA

60. NYC Genocide Prevention Coalition, USA

61. Genocide Alert, Germany

62. World Federalist Movement – Canada

63. Asuntos del Sur, Argentina

64. African Freedom Coalition, USA

65. Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect

66. Ligue pour la Promotion et le Developpement Integral de la Femme et de l'Enfant (LIPRODIFE), Democratic Republic of the Congo

67. Darfur Reconciliation and Development Organization (DRDO), Uganda

68. Darfur Alert Coalition, USA

69. Voices for Sudan, USA

70. International Justice Darfur Association in the USA

71. COVERCONGO, Democratic Republic of the Congo

72. San Francisco Bay Area Darfur Coalition, USA

73. Damanga Coalition for Freedom and Democracy, USA

74. The International Justice Project, Inc., USA

75. Genocide Watch, USA

76. Coalition Ivoirienne pour la CPI, Cote d’Ivoire

77. Act for Sudan, USA

78. Investors Against Genocide, USA

79. Use Your Voice to Stop Genocide, USA

80. Darfur Women Action Group, USA

81. Darfur Solidarity of North America, USA

82. Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights, Egypt

83. Coalition of Eastern NGOs (CENGOS), Nigeria

84. National Coalition on Affirmative Action (NCAA), Nigeria

85. Coalition Centrafricaine pour la Cour Pénale Internationale, CAR

86. Avocats Sans Frontieres-Uganda

87. Women’s Initiatives for Gender Justice with offices in Cairo, Egypt, Kampala and Kitgum, Uganda, and The Hague, the Netherlands.

88. l'Association LEAD-CENTRAFRIQUE, CAR

89. Connecting Gender for development (COGEN), Nigeria

90. Darfur Union, The Netherlands

91. Asia-Pacific Centre for the Responsibility to Protect, Australia

92. Darfur Call, The Netherlands

93. Darfur Reporters & Journalists, The Netherlands

94. Open Society Justice Initiative

95. Global Justice Center, USA

96. Center for Accountability and Rule of Law (CARL, Sierra Leone

97. Human Rights First Rwanda, Rwanda