Written evidence of the massacre and rape of thousands of civilians in the western region of Sudan has been handed to the UN’s International Criminal Court. Chief Prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo is investigating alleged crimes against humanity. He said his field team, based in neighbouring Chad, had faced serious difficulties in terms of access.
“Our justice effort should contribute to the protection and to the prevention of further crimes. We need more information on groups that continue to attack them or impede their access to monetary assistance.” Rebel forces took up arms in the region in February 2003, accusing the government in Khartoum of favouring Arabs over Darfur’s Black Africans. The UN report criticises the Sudanese government’s own investigations into the alleged atrocities. This is a significant development, as the UN can only prosecute if Sudan does not provide adequate justice for its own people. Darfur has been dubbed the world’s worst humanitarian crisis. It is estimated that around two hundred thousand people have died during the three year conflict, while two million have been displaced.