Sudan's U.N. envoy puts in plug for Bashir

Feb. 10, 2011 at 8:19 AM
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KHARTOUM, Sudan, Feb. 10 (UPI) -- Sudan's U.N. ambassador says President Omar al-Bashir is the "hero of peace" and should be rewarded for accepting the secession of southern Sudan.

Ambassador Daffa Alla el-Haj Ali Osman suggested to the United Nations Security Council Wednesday Bashir should be rewarded for accepting the results of an election in which Southern Sudan seceded from the north, the BBC reported.

"Shouldn't this be rewarded by your distinguished and august council by a new vision, a new vision that would reconsider the position vis-a-vis the hero of peace, President Bashir?" Osman asked.

The International Criminal Court issued an arrest warrant for Bashir nearly two years ago on war crimes and crimes against humanity charges related to the conflict in Darfur.

The African Union has urged the charges be dropped to encourage Khartoum to settle issues with the south, which will formally declare its independence in July, the BBC reported.

The Security Council Wednesday congratulated the Sudanese government for its cooperation on the south's vote. Bashir promised to recognize southern Sudan after 99 percent of its voters approved secession.

January's referendum was part of a 2005 peace agreement that ended a bloody civil war in the African country.

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