President Omar al-Bashir, visiting South Africa for an African Union summit, stands accused in an ICC arrest warrant of war crimes and crimes against humanity over atrocities committed in the Darfur conflict. He was first indicted in 2009.
               
A judge today is expected to hear an application calling for Bashir's arrest, although this appears unlikely because South Africa's government has granted legal immunity to all African Union delegates.
               
South African President Jacob Zuma's ruling African National Congress (ANC) responded furiously to Sunday's court order, accusing the Hague-based ICC of seeking to impose selective Western justice by singling out Africans.
               
"The ANC holds the view that the International Criminal Court is no longer useful for the purposes for which it was intended. Countries, mainly in Africa and Eastern Europe ... continue to unjustifiably bear the brunt of the decisions of the ICC, with Sudan being the latest example," the ANC said in a statement.
               
A human rights group, the Southern African Litigation Centre, earlier petitioned the Pretoria High Court to force the government to issue an arrest warrant for Bashir.
               
Judge Hans Fabricius postponed the hearing until 9:30 am on Monday to allow the government time to prepare its case, urging South African authorities to "take all necessary steps" to prevent Bashir leaving the country.

Sudan's government said Bashir had not slipped out of the country, despite some media reports to the contrary. "President Bashir is here in Johannesburg," Presidency spokesman Mohammed Hatem said from the South African commercial capital.

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