DARFUR AND THE ICC
In a likely post-secession scenario, most of the
international attention and donor funds will go south in an
effort to ensure the new state is viable and does not collapse.
With little hope for a Darfur peace process because of
constant fighting and rebel divisions, focus will wane on the
crisis in Sudan's west, creating a festering low-level conflict
with a population dependent on aid.
The International Criminal Court arrest warrant for Bashir
will keep international engagement in the north muted because of
the fear, especially European governments will have, of
undermining the ICC by engaging him. [ID:nLDE66B1NI
But if Britain's new policy of increasing trade with Sudan
bears fruit, it could set an example to other European nations
to re-enter the northern economy looking for massive returns on
investment. But London will need to convince banks the risk is
worth taking as both Barclays and Lloyds TSB have paid hefty
fines to Washington for violating U.S. sanctions on Sudan.
What to watch:
-- Darfur's humanitarian crisis at its peak claimed an
estimated 5,000 lives a day and could flare up if insecurity and
kidnappings continue to hinder aid access.
-- International isolation could push Bashir's government to
adopt more extremist policies. Washington in particular would
want to keep its close anti-terrorism cooperation with Khartoum
for as long as that threat remains.
But if Khartoum becomes less useful, isolation could push it
back to the role it played of the 1990s, when it harboured
internationally wanted criminals and insurgent groups and any
dissent was crushed.
(Editing by Alison Williams)