ICC opens investigation into Sudan conflict


International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutor Karim Khan announced July 13 that the court has opened an investigation into human rights offenses committed by the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF) and rival Rapid Security Forces (RSF), 90 days after the current conflict began in Sudan. Khan appeared before the UN Security Council to make the announcement.

Khan said that ICC investigators are following up on claims of attacks on civilians, the targeting of ethnic minorities, and sexual violence and violence against children. Khan pleaded with the warring factions to cease the violations, stating, “Attacks against schools, against humanitarian supplies, against humanitarian facilities must cease because the harm that these types of activities are causing are so profound, they go beyond words.”

The new conflict in Sudan, which broke out in April, has displaced over 800,000 people within Sudan and an additional 220,000 who have fled the country, principally for Chad. The fighting has been particularly fierce in the western region of Darfur. In his comments before the Security Council, Khan referenced reports of “looting and…extrajudicial killings, burnings of homes” in the region. He cited Security Council Resolution 1593 of 2005, which authorizes the ICC to investigate crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes in Darfur.

The bodies of at least 87, mainly ethnic Masalit, believed to have been killed last month by the Rapid Support Forces and their allied Arab militia in West Darfur, have been buried in a mass grave outside the state’s capital El-Geneina on the orders of the RSF, according to credible information obtained by the UN Human Rights Office.

From Jurist, July 14. Used with permission.

Photo: Henry Wilkins/VOA via Jurist

  1. Sudan air-strike kills at least 40 civilians

    Air-strikes in the Quoro market area of Sudan’s capital, Khartoum, killed at least 40 civilians and injured at least 50 more. The market “massacre,” with the highest death toll since the beginning of the war in Sudan, was reported by the Resistance Committee, a local activist group providing humanitarian aid to victims of the war. The paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF) alleged that the Sudanese military was responsible for the strikes. The military has denied the accusation. (Jurist)