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Trial of Ousted Sudan President Omar al-Bashir Adjourned

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The trial of ousted Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir has been adjourned until October 6.

This is the sixth adjournment since the trial opened in July.

A total of 28 defendants stand accused of plotting the 1989 Islamist-backed military coup, which toppled the democratically elected government of Prime Minister Sadiq al-Mahdi and brought al-Bashir to power. Al-Bashir has been in jail in Khartoum after he was ousted amid a slew of mass protests.

Once al-Bashir seized power, he quickly suspended the Parliament and other state institutions, closed Khartoum airport, and announced the coup over the radio.

He then targeted potential opposition leaders and imposed Islamic law, which markedly restricted freedoms for women especially.

For more than a decade, the International Criminal Court (ICC) has sought him out for alleged war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity in Darfur. The war killed an estimated 300,000 people beginning in 2003.

The delay comes weeks after Sudan signed a peace deal with a coalition of rebel groups from Darfur’s western region and the southern states of South Kordofan and Blue Nile.

The deal followed months of difficult negotiations around the country’s decades-long civil wars. Leading rebel groups had refused to participate in any peace agreements. It is anticipated that the new deal will ultimately help to end 17 years of conflict in the North African country.

Amongst the groups who signed the treaty were the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) and Sudan Liberation Army (SLA) from the western region of Darfur, and Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North (SPLM-N) led by Malik Agar from the southern states of South Kordofan and Blue Nile.

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