Jurisdiction in the general situation
Sudan is not a State Party to the Rome Statute. However, since the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) referred the situation in Darfur to the ICC in Resolution 1593 (2005) on 31 March 2005, the ICC may exercise its jurisdiction over crimes listed in the Rome Statute committed on the territory of Darfur, Sudan, or by its nationals from 1 July 2002 onwards.
Context and alleged crimes
The ICC investigations regarding Darfur focus on allegations of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in Darfur, Sudan, since 1 July 2002.
The UNSC determined that "the situation in Sudan continues to constitute a threat to international peace and security", and referred this situation to the ICC in March 2005, taking note of the report of the International Commission of Inquiry on violations of international humanitarian law and human rights law in Darfur (S/2005/60). The UN Secretary-General established the Commission "to investigate reports of violations of international humanitarian law and human rights law in Darfur by all parties, to determine also whether or not acts of genocide have occurred, and to identify the perpetrators of such violations with a view to ensuring that those responsible are held accountable." The Commission took as a starting point two facts: "First, according to United Nations estimates there are 1.65 million internally displaced persons in Darfur, and more than 200,000 refugees from Darfur in neighbouring Chad. Secondly, there has been large-scale destruction of villages throughout the three States of Darfur."
The ICC investigation, which opened in June 2005, has produced several cases with suspects ranging from Sudanese Government officials, Militia/Janjaweed leaders, and leaders of the Resistance Front, and has involved charges that include the following crimes:
- genocide: genocide by killing; genocide by causing serious bodily or mental harm; and genocide by deliberately inflicting on each target group conditions of life calculated to bring about the group's physical destruction;
- war crimes: murder; attacks against the civilian population; destruction of property; rape; pillaging; and outrage upon personal dignity; violence to life and person; intentionally directing attacks against personnel, installations, material, units or vehicles involved in a peacekeeping mission; and
- crimes against humanity: murder; persecution; forcible transfer of population; rape; inhumane acts; imprisonment or severe deprivation of liberty; torture; extermination; and torture.
The situation in Darfur was the first to be referred to the ICC by the United Nations Security Council, and the first ICC investigation on the territory of a non-State Party to the Rome Statute. It was the first ICC investigation dealing with allegations of the crime of genocide.
Sudan's President Omar Al Bashir is the first sitting President to be wanted by the ICC, and the first person to be charged by the ICC for the crime of genocide. Neither of the two warrants of arrest against him have been enforced, and he is not in the Court's custody.
See the ICC Prosecutor's reports to the UNSC on the investigation.