After the first indictment against Sudanese President Bashir dropped genocide from its list of charges, a second indictment made public by the International Criminal Court (ICC) this week has officially added three counts of genocide.
Noting that the second warrant does not replace or revoke the first, the court stated “there are reasonable grounds to believe that Mr Al Bashir acted with specific intent to destroy in part the Fur, Masalit and Zaghawa ethnic groups.” The arrest warrant cites the contamination of wells and water pumps, forcible transfers, and resettlements as acts by Government of Sudan forces “in furtherance of the genocidal policy.”
Bashir already stands accused of five counts of crimes again humanity and two counts of war crimes for his leadership in orchestrating the conflict in Darfur.
The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum characterized this decision by the ICC as an important step towards holding leaders accountable for such egregious crimes.
“This is the first time that the International Criminal Court has accused a sitting head of state of genocide,” said Mike Abramowitz, Director of the Museum’s genocide prevention program. “Justice requires that President Al Bashir respond to these very serious charges against him.”