The government will withdrawn its application for leave to appeal the Supreme Court of Appeal’s (SCA) decision on its failure to arrest Sudan’s President Omar Al-Bashir.
Justice Minister Michael Masutha announced this decision at a media briefing in Hatfield on Friday‚ at which he also confirmed that SA had notified the United Nations of its intention to withdraw from the International Criminal Court (ICC).
The application was set down for November 22 at the Constitutional Court.
“An application for leave to appeal the decision of the SCA…will now be withdrawn‚” Masutha said.
“This is so‚ especially as the SCA has removed the uncertainty around customary international law in relation to diplomatic immunity in so far as it affects heads of states and others who may be wanted for serious violations of human rights and other serious crimes but who enjoy diplomatic immunity under international customary law.”
Masutha would not say how the government will deal with the Al-Bashir matter.
“We will cross that bridge when we get there‚” he said.
The appeal stems from a judgment in June 2015 in which the High Court in Pretoria stated that Al-Bashir should have been arrested while in South Africa under a warrant issued by the ICC to face trial for crimes committed in Sudan.