Trial of Omar Bashir over corruption, receiving gifts illegally set to begin

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Sudan’s former president Omar al-Bashir is due to go on trial for corruption allegations, which brought down his 30-year rule.
The deposed leader, whose trial begins on Monday, faces charges related to “possessing foreign currency, corruption and receiving gifts illegally”.
Al-Bashir seized power in a military coup on June 30, 1989, and stayed in office until April 11, 2019, when he was overthrown and arrested by the armed forces.



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April this year, The BBC reported that a huge amount of cash was discovered at al-Bashir’s home leading to the start of investigations for money laundering against the deposed leader. The money was was stuffed in bags designed to contain 50kg (110lbs) of grain
Prosecutors have also opened other criminal probes against al-Bashir, including on charges of money laundering, financing “terrorism” and “ordering the killing of protesters” – the latter is an offence that carries the death penalty in Sudan. Security services found Euros, US Dollars and Sudanese Pounds totalling more than $130m.



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Ahead of the trial, Amnesty International’s Director for East Africa Joan Nyanyuki said in a statement: “While this trial is a positive step towards accountability for some of his alleged crimes, he remains wanted for heinous crimes committed against the Sudanese people.”
Over the course of his time in office, al-Bashir led Sudan through several conflicts and became wanted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for alleged atrocities in Darfur. He was also the last man to lead a united Sudan, prior to South Sudan’s independence in 2011.



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Al-Bashir was born into a peasant family in 1944, in Hosh Wad Banaqa, northern Sudan. After finishing high school in th


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e capital, Khartoum, he enrolled in a military academy in Egypt in 1960.

A wanted man
Al-Bashir was the only serving head of state to be indicted for war crimes.
In June 2008, the ICC charged al-Bashir with war crimes and crimes against humanity in connection with the ongoing attacks against Darfur’s non-Arab ethnic groups. The ICC has since issued two arrest warrants against him.

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