President Museveni loves showing off his friendship with his old enemy Omar Bashir president of Sudan, but their budding bromance is earning him and Uganda an earful from those who are considered genuine friends of Uganda in this respect, the European Union.
The EU has expressed its displeasure that Uganda hosted a wanted war criminal and made no effort to have him arrest him and brought to justice for war crimes and genocide.
The EU statement was direct and to the point:
‘In accordance with established approach of the EU and its Member States, the EU regrets that Uganda, a State Party of the Court, did not fulfill its legal obligation, in accordance with UN Security Council resolution 1593, to execute the arrest warrant against any ICC indictee ( Omar al-Bashir) present in the country.’
Bashir is wanted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) on charges of genocide, war crimes and human right abuse. Most of these were committed in Darfur.
Bashir arrived in Uganda early this week for a two day state visit and upon his arrival, was accorded a red carpet welcome and a 21 gun salute.
Bashir held talks with Museveni and even took time to visit the Presidents farm in Kisozi where he was driven around the sprawling facility by the president himself.
President Museveni has been a vocal critic of the ICC describing the court as racist. But despite threatening to quit the Rome Statute which binds Uganda to the operation of the ICC, Museveni has for years failed to submit papers to withdraw Uganda from the ICC.