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The ICC’s chief prosecutor says atrocities in Darfur are increasing

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The International Criminal Court’s chief prosecutor, Karim Khan, has seen clear evidence of atrocities in Sudan’s Darfur region.

In an urgent appeal issued in The Hague on Tuesday, Khan called on international organizations, partners and national authorities to gather evidence and information and hand it over to him.

Every day, he said, his investigators receive information from Darfur that points to what he called an organized, systematic and serious attack on human dignity.

The Hague-based tribunal has been investigating genocide in Darfur since 2005, when it was commissioned to do so by the UN Security Council.

In 2009, the court issued an international arrest warrant for Sudan’s then president, Omar al-Bashir, on suspicion of genocide. One focus of the investigation is a 2023 massacre in West Darfur.

Khan cited persistent and ongoing attacks on the civilian population and especially on refugee camps, massive and widespread rape and other forms of sexual violence, bombings of residential areas, looting and attacks on hospitals.

The crisis is worsening, suffering is increasing, the chief prosecutor said. UN experts are already talking about a new genocide.

The backdrop to the new wave of violence is the bloody power struggle between Sudan’s de facto leader, Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, and his former deputy, now rival, Mohammed Hamdan Daglo.

According to UN figures, this has led to the flight of almost 10 million people. Large parts of the capital Khartoum have been destroyed and heavy fighting is currently taking place, especially in North Darfur province.

Khan said the international community should not allow Darfur to once again become the world’s forgotten atrocity. He called for photographs, videos and audio recordings to be collected and witnesses to be contacted.

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