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Sudan's Al Bashir pulls out of EU-Africa Summit
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Nov 29, 2010 - 7:00:38 AM

11/29/10 12:36 PM

Sudan's Al Bashir pulls out of EU-Africa Summit

Tripoli - Sudanese President Omer Al Bashir on Sunday announced his pull out of the Third European Union-African Summit, citing pressure from the European countries to have him arrested for war crimes and genocide and warned the European bloc to keep off the peace processes in the Sudan.

Sudanese Foreign Minister Ali Karti said the Sudanese leader decided to pull out of the summit in Tripoli to avoid putting the Libyan government in a compromising position.

"There has been pressure from the European leaders to have President Al Bashir arrested. He decided to withdraw to avoid putting Libya in a complicated position as the host of the summit," the Sudanese minister told journalists on the sidelines of an African Foreign Ministers' meeting ahead of the summit on Monday.

A Sudanese diplomat, speaking on conditions of anonymity, said the decision to pull out of the meeting was itself a boycott by the Sudanese delegation, which had arrived for the summit.

Libyan Foreign Minister Musa Kussa told PANA Tripoli had sent an invitation to the Sudanese President, adding that the host country did its part by sending the invitation but was not responsible for the Sudanese decision to pull out.

"We share the same position of Sudan," the minister said without elaborating.

The International Criminal Court (ICC) issued a second arrest warrant against Al Bashir in June, this year, for genocide. The judges at the court, based at The Hague, said there was adequate evidence to try him on genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes over the civil war in Darfur.

Al Bashir was expected to visit Tripoli to attend a meeting of the Peace and Security Council (PSC), slated here Tuesday to discuss the peace process in the South of Sudan and the crisis in Darfur.

The 15 members of the PSC are scheduled to discuss the upcoming referendum in the South at the level of the heads of state and government.

Karti said Sudan would not cooperate with the European bloc as long as the bloc supported the indictment of their leader.
"As long as the EU supports the indictment and the ICC decision, they should not  be associated with the peace processes in the Sudan, including the implementati on of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement," Karti said.

Meanwhile, Sudan's Ambassador to the African Union, said the decision to pull out of the Tripoli summit was not sudden, as it had been pre-planned.

"The decision is not sudden. This was programmed. This meeting is like any other .It will come and go, it will be finished and the world would continue as usual," said the ambassador.

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