Sudanese president, Omar al-Bashir, resolved to snub the IGAD summit on South Sudan held in the Ugandan capital, Kampala.
On Monday, President Yoweri Museveni met with Kenya’s Uhuru Kenyatta, South Sudan Foreign minister, Marial Benjamin, Ethiopia’s Prime Minister, Hailemariam Desalegn and Ethiopia Foreign minister, Dr Tedros Adhanom, at State House Entebbe.
The leaders deliberated on the South Sudan crisis in Bashir’s absentia.
While addressing press, Museveni said he had invited Bashir and would not arrest him in Kampala.
“I cannot invite someone (Sudan President Omar Bashir) and arrest him.”
“That is ‘buyaye’ (loosely translated as double-dealing or rascality)”.
However, the Sudan ambassador to Uganda said Bashir would not attend the IGAD summit in Kampala contrary to earlier reports.
Bashir instead sent a special message to Museveni.
The written message was delivered by Sudan’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Prof. Ibrahim Ghandour, who also represented President Al-Bashir at the IGAD meeting at State House Entebbe.
Bashir faces war crimes and genocide charges by the International Criminal Court (ICC), in relation to the genocide in Darfur region.
Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, says all UN member states (Uganda subscribes) have to take ICC warrants seriously.
Bashir who is scheduled to attend a UN summit dedicated to sustainable development in New York late September faces arrest in the US.
Last week, the South African President, Jacob Zuma, defended the decision to let Bashir evade an arrest warrant and leave the country in June, saying on Thursday the wanted leader had had immunity as a guest of the African Union.
South Sudan peace talks
Meanwhile, South Sudan’s peace talks are still continuing in Addis Ababa amid reports of disagreements on some points in the IGAD-Plus peace proposal.
SPLM-G10 representative and former justice minister John Luk told Radio Tamazuj negotiators were still discussing the proposal until yesterday Tuesday without any progress.
He pointed out that viewpoints of the government and the armed opposition are still apart.
Before the talks resume, Kiir’s government had reservations on some points in the IGAD proposed peace deal to end the ongoing conflict in South Sudan.
According to the proposed agreement, the warring parties will share power in a transitional government of national unity, with the current ruling party maintaining a majority stake in the national government. In three state governments, the rebel group SPLM-IO will take a greater share of power.
IGAD-Plus, which includes the regional mediating bloc IGAD and a consortium of western and African nations and China, has given President Kiir’s and the rebellion of Riek Machar until 17 August to strike a peace deal.