The government will not send Sudanese citizens or officials suspected of committing war crimes in the western province of Darfur to any international court, Sudan's vice president said Saturday.
Earlier this week, a report to the UN recommended 51 Sudanese — including high-level government officials, rebels and Arabs who served in the militia known as the Janjaweed — stand trial at the International Criminal Court on war crimes charges related to the two-year Darfur conflict.
The report by a U.N. commission also said government-backed militias were still involved in rape, mass killings and wanton destruction in Darfur. The conflict has left at least 70,000 people dead and forced more than 2 million from their homes.
Vice President Ali Osman Mohammed Taha told a rally in the North Darfur capital of El Fasher that anyone found to have committed human rights-related crimes will be dealt with by Sudanese authorities.
"What is being reported about a trial of some individuals or officials in courts outside the Sudan is something we will not accept as a government," Sudan's state-run news agency quoted Taha as saying.