U.N. Secretary-General &to=http:// english.pravda.ru/world/2002/06/27/31302.html ' target=_blank>Kofi Annan urged the Security Council on Tuesday to take urgent action to stop the killing in Darfur after a U.N. panel called for international trials for those behind atrocities. The panel, however, stopped short of accusing Sudan's government and allied Arab militias of genocide.
The panel's report sets up a possible showdown with Washington, which opposes the &to=http:// english.pravda.ru/usa/2002/05/07/28372.html ' target=_blank>International Criminal Court where the report says Darfur suspects should be tried.
Annan said council members should consider imposing sanctions and pressed for the prosecution of those accused in the report of mass killings, torture, rape and other atrocities in Darfur, a large region of western Sudan, informs the Guardian.
The &to=http:// english.pravda.ru/usa/2002/08/29/35516.html ' target=_blank>Bush administration says it welcomes the U.N. commission report on Darfur and says it hopes it produces stronger action by the United Nations against perpetrators of crimes there, including new sanctions.
But it opposes a referral of Darfur crimes to the International Criminal Court (ICC) about which it has long-standing political concerns.
At a news briefing, State Department Spokesman Richard Boucher said there is no requirement that the case go to the ICC. He said the United States believes there are sound political and logistical reasons for having the existing African war crimes tribunal in Tanzania take up the case, says Voice of America.
According to the BBC News, more than 70,000 people have been killed in the two-year conflict and some two million have fled their homes.
Many of the refugees, mostly non-Arabs, say that militiamen backed up by the security forces have ridden into their villages on horses and camels, slaughtering the men, raping the women and stealing whatever they can find.