Canada Urges Sudan to Cooperate with International Criminal Court

(No. 58 - March 4, 2009) The Honourable Lawrence Cannon, Minister of Foreign Affairs, today issued the following statement regarding the warrant issued by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for the arrest of President Omar al-Bashir of Sudan:

"The International Criminal Court is an independent judicial institution established to ensure accountability for, and to deter, the most serious international crimes. Canada strongly supports the work of the ICC, including its work in Sudan.

"Canada strongly condemns acts that cause tremendous human suffering. We will continue to take strong action and call for ongoing international scrutiny of Sudan's commitments to human rights.

"We call on all parties to exercise restraint in their rhetoric and their actions, and urge them to resist all provocation.

"Canada continues to urge the Government of Sudan to abide by its international obligations, as defined by United Nations Security Council Resolution 1593, to cooperate fully with the Court.

"Canada remains committed to helping build a long-lasting peace in Sudan, and to supporting humanitarian efforts to assist the civilian population. Canada's engagement in Sudan is based upon the fundamental values that underlie our foreign policy priorities, namely democracy, freedom, human rights and the rule of law."

For information on Canada's contributions to the International Criminal Court, please consult Canada and the International Criminal Court.

For information on Canada's engagement in Sudan, please visit:Canada: Active in Sudan.

- 30 -

For further information, media representatives may contact:

Catherine Loubier
Communications Director
Office of the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Foreign Affairs Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada