Nigerian activists protest visit by Sudan leader

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Associated Press

Posted on July 13, 2013 at 10:02 AM

Updated Saturday, Jul 13 at 10:06 AM

LAGOS, Nigeria (AP) — Human rights activists are threatening to go to court to demand that Nigeria arrest Sudan President Omar al-Bashir if he makes a planned visit.

It would be al-Bashir's first visit to Nigeria since the International Criminal court indicted him in 2009 for genocide and war crimes in Darfur.

Chino Obiagwu of the Nigerian Coalition for the ICC said they would go to court to force officials to fulfill Nigeria's commitment as an ICC member.

Sudan's official radio said al-Bashir will visit Nigeria Sunday to attend an African Union summit. The 53-nation organization has urged members not to arrest al-Bashir. Some Africans accuse the ICC of racism in targeting Africans.

Nigerian officials did not respond to requests for comment. But a diplomat at Sudan's embassy in Nigeria told The Associated Press that al-Bashir is expected to arrive in Abuja, Nigeria's capital, early Sunday evening. He refused to give his name. The summit, focusing on health, takes place Monday and Tuesday.

Several African countries have avoided visits by al-Bashir because of the controversy.

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