Saturday, August 09, 2008

The Imperial Criminal Circus (ICC) and the Muslim world

On 19/7/2008 Arab leaders met in Cairo to discuss how to thwart the International Criminal Court (ICC) from issuing an arrest warrant for Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir. Algerian Foreign Minister Mourad Medelci told his Arab counterparts:” What the prosecutor of the court has done is a dangerous precedent.”

Encouraged by the EU, ICC’s involvement with Sudan started on 31 March 2005, when, the United Nations Security Council passed Resolution 1593 that referred to the situation in Darfur . In February 2007 the ICC declared that two men — Sudanese humanitarian affairs minister Ahmad Muhammad Harun and Janjaweed militia leader Ali Kushayb — had been identified as key suspects in crimes against humanity. On 2 May 2007, the Court issued arrest warrants for the two men. However, Sudan maintained that the Court had no jurisdiction over this matter, and refused to hand over the suspects. On 14 July 2008, the ICC's chief prosecutor, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, asked the ICC for a warrant to arrest President Bashir. Moreno-Ocampo accuses Bashir killing 35,000 people outright and at least another 100,000 through slow death, and forced 2.5 million to flee their homes in Darfur . This is the first time that the ICC has served notice on a head of state.

The actions of the ICC demonstrate clearly how humanitarian concerns are being exploited by western powers to violate the sovereignty of a nation. Humanitarian intervention by western powers in the affairs of another state is not a new concept, but one which has evolved over a number of years and now enjoys the support of international law. This has dramatically changed the dynamics of the concept of nation state as envisioned by the Westphalia treaty of 1648, which stipulates that a nation’s sovereignty must be respected by other states. However, humanitarian intervention as practiced by the ICC is dictated by states that fund and support the court. EU is by far the ICC’s biggest donor and selectively controls application of the courts jurisdiction. For instance the ICC has not taken any action against Tony Blair and George Bush for violating international law, invading Iraq and committing genocide. Likewise, the ICC has not invoked any action against the heads of states belonging to Israel , India and Russia for perpetrating genocide in Palestine , Kashmir and Chechnya . Even when some of the rulers of the Muslim world commit genocide against their own people that blatantly falls within the scope of ICC’s jurisdiction, the West remains silent. For instance, western powers have turned a blind eye to Musharraf’s killing fields in Balochistan and the Federal Administered Tribal Areas (FATA). Hence, ICC’s push to indict Bashir is politically driven by the West and is being used as a pretext to invade Sudan and occupy its rich oil reserves and other precious minerals.

Oh Muslims! Do you not see how the rulers are only interested in saving their own necks?Do you not see how West treats you? They prop up your leaders against your wishes and then use them to slaughter you and rob you of your wealth and honour. After these rulers have served their usefulness the West dismisses them like used tissues and appoints other tyrants over you. And yet cling to the vain hope that some how the ICC and similar institutions will safe you from the tyrants. Your only respite lies in the re-establishment of the Khilafah, which will not only seize the hands of the tyrants but also punish their masters. So hurry and redouble your efforts to establish the Khilafah for Allah says O you who believe! answer (the call of) Allah and His Apostle when he calls you to that which gives you life; and know that Allah intervenes between man and his heart, and that to Him you shall be gathered. (8:24)

Abid Mustafa

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