EU to threaten Sudan with new sanctions… International experts estimate some 200,000 people have died

EU to threaten Sudan with new sanctions

European Union leaders were set to warn Sudan on Friday that it faces fresh sanctions if it fails to cooperate on war crimes, a draft statement of an EU leaders summit said.

The EU “is deeply concerned about the lack of cooperation with the ICC (International Criminal Court) by the Sudanese authorities and calls on the government of Sudan to work constructively with the ICC,” said the draft obtained by Reuters ahead of the close of the summit.

The leaders would call on their foreign ministers to follow developments in Sudan closely and “contemplate additional measures in case of lack of full cooperation with the United Nations and other institutions, including the UCC,” it said.

The 27 leaders can alter the final text but diplomats said major changes were unlikely.

In March, the Slovenian EU presidency said the bloc would back sanctions if Sudan failed to hand over to the ICC Ahmed Haroun, its former minister for humanitarian affairs, and former Janjaweed militia leader Ali Muhammad Ali Abd-Al-Rahman, wanted in connection with suspected crimes against humanity in Darfur.

International experts estimate some 200,000 people have died and 2.5 million have been forced from their homes in five years of ethnic and political conflict in Darfur. Khartoum says 10,000 people have been killed.

Existing EU sanctions on Khartoum include an arms embargo and restrictions against members of the Sudanese government.

EU foreign ministers warned of possible new sanctions on Monday but stopped short of giving instructions to diplomats to draw up sanctions that could be imposed after France and Spain argued for a step-by-step approach, diplomats said.

Human rights campaign groups, including Human Rights Watch, say the time to act is now and they have urged the EU to take sanctions rather than warn they could be imposed.

* Source: Reuters

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Author: MRN Network

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