Al Bashir case: ICC Pre-Trial Chamber II schedules a hearing on South Africa’s cooperation on 7 April 2017

Omar Hassan Ahmad Al Bashir © ICC-CPI

On 8 December 2016, Pre-Trial Chamber II of the International Criminal Court issued a decision convening a public hearing on 7 April 2017, for the purposes of a determination, under article 87(7) of the Rome Statute, on the compliance by the Republic of South Africa with the Court’s request for arrest and surrender of Mr. Omar Al Bashir to the Court.

Despite the Court’s request for arrest and surrender of Omar Al Bashir to the Court, South Africa did not arrest and surrender him while he was on its territory between 13 and 15 June 2015. Subsequently, on 4 September 2015, the Chamber requested the competent authorities of South Africa to submit their “views on the events surrounding Omar Al Bashir’s attendance of the African Union summit in Johannesburg”. On 15 October 2015, upon a request by South African authorities for an extension of the time limit set by the Chamber, the Chamber granted South Africa “until such time as the currently ongoing relevant judicial proceedings before the courts of South Africa are finalised”. Given that the domestic proceedings in South Africa are now concluded, South Africa shall be heard about a possible finding of non-compliance for failure to arrest and surrender Omar Al Bashir to the Court.

During the hearing scheduled on 7 April 2017, submissions will be presented to the Chamber with respect to:

  1. whether South Africa failed to comply with its obligations under the Statute by not arresting and surrendering Omar Al Bashir to the Court while he was on its territory; and if so,
  2. whether circumstances are such that a formal finding of non-compliance by South Africa in this respect and referral of the matter to the Assembly of States Parties to the Rome Statute and/or the Security Council of the United Nations are warranted.

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