JUNE 7, 2010: Country Clarifies Bashir Invite for AU Meet

Country Clarifies Bashir Invite for AU Meet
SOURCE: The New Vision
By Barbara Among
Uganda has clarified that Sudanese President Omar el-Bashir has been invited for the African Union (AU) summit in Kampala in July.

A statement from foreign affairs ministry said the Sudanese embassy in Kampala has confirmed that they received and sent the invitation letter dated March 17, to Khartoum.

"President Bashir of Sudan was actually invited for the AU summit scheduled to take place in Kampala from the 19th to 29th July 2010," read the statement.

The ministry said African heads of state have been invited, except those who were suspended from the AU for specific reasons. Niger and Guinea were suspended over military coups.

Sudan on Sunday demanded an apology from Uganda over a statement from State House which quoted President Yoweri Museveni saying Bashir had not been invited for the African Union summit.

Bashir also demanded that the summit be moved to another venue.

Sudan's foreign ministry also said Museveni's statement showed that Kampala had "ill intentions" against Khartoum.

Bashir has had to restrict his international travel since the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued an arrest warrant against him last year on charges of committing atrocities in Sudan's western Darfur region.