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ICC: Massacres in Darfur

ICC: Massacres in Darfur

The ICC’s chief prosecutor says his office has so far documented “a significant number of large scale massacres,” each “with hundreds of victims,” as well as hundreds of cases of alleged rapes in Darfur, according to a report to the UN released yesterday. The report goes on to state that Sudanese authorities have failed to investigate or prosecute cases currently under investigation, which means the ICC would have jurisdiction to proceed with prosecutions. Chief Prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo says he expects to file charges, presumably in the next few months, but Sudanese officials said today that the ICC doesn’t have authority and that Sudanese trials have simply been slowed by logistical factors.

The ICC moving forward on Darfur is good news not just for Darfur, but for the ICC. If the court can bring Darfur war criminals to justice, it may signal to the Bush administration that their cold-shoulder stance toward the court deserves a rethink.