EU explains walkout on Museveni ceremony


EU Ambassador Kristian Schmidt meeting youth empowerment in Uganda with the Youth Advocacy Foundation Uganda

The European Union has explained a decision by its envoy’s walk out of President Yoweri Museveni’s swearing in ceremony.

On May 12, US, EU and Canadian delegations walked out of Kololo Independence Grounds in protest of Sudan President Omar al-Bashir’s presence at the event.

State Department spokeswoman, Elizabeth Trudeau, said it happened after Museveni launched an attack on International Criminal Court [ICC].

While introducing Sudan president Omar al-Bashir, Museveni called ICC a bunch of useless people and also attacked the West for criticising his government.

The U.S. Ambassador to Uganda Deborah Malac and a visiting Washington-based official, along with several European and Canadian diplomats, abruptly left the inauguration after Museveni’s remarks.

US and EU had also objected to Bashir’s participation in the inauguration since he is wanted by ICC for war crimes in Darfur.

EU explains

In a statement on Thursday, the EU clarified on its participation at Uganda Presidential inauguration.

“In response to press reports, the EU Delegation wishes to put on record that the EU Head of Delegation attended the 12 May inauguration of H.E. President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, and was honoured to witness the full swearing-in ceremony with other invited guests”.

The statement said the EU Head of Delegation left the ceremony after the official swearing-in, due to the observed non-cooperation with the International Criminal Court, and for that reason only.

“The EU Delegation takes this opportunity to reaffirm its close partnership with the Government and people of the Republic of Uganda.”

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