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Sudanese Islamic Scholars issue fatwa calling upon al-Bashir not to go to Arab League Summit

Omar al-Bashir

Omar al-Bashir

The AP is reporting today:

Sudan’s Islamic scholars have issued a religious edict calling on the president not to travel to an Arab summit because of the international warrant against him on war crimes charges, state media reported Sunday.

The scholar’s fatwa, a nonbinding religious opinion, joins increasing calls in Africa’s largest nation for President Omar al-Bashir to skip the summit in Qatar at the end of this month for fear of an attempt to implement the arrest warrant issued by the International Criminal Court.

“The enemies would like to see us split and thrown to the four winds, and if you are harmed then the whole nation would be affected,” the scholars argued in their fatwa.

“From a Sharia (Islamic law) standpoint, you must not travel abroad,” they added, saying it was part of their role as Islamic scholars to advise the president on matters that affect the lives of Muslims in the country.

Al-Bahir, nonetheless, indicates that he will go to Doha. (HT: HumanRightsNews)

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Anthony Clark Arend is Professor of Government and Foreign Service at Georgetown University and the Director of the Master of Science in Foreign Service in the Walsh School of Foreign Service.

Commentary and analysis at the intersection of international law and politics.