New date given for former Sudan President Omar al-Bashir's corruption trial

New date given for former Sudan President Omar al-Bashir's corruption trial
2 min read
31 July, 2019
Omar al-Bashir will stand trial next month.
Bashir will stand trial next month [Getty]

Former Sudan President Omar al-Bashir will stand trial for corruption on 17 August, his lawyer said, after the ex-president failed to appear in court Wednesday for the first session.

"Today was the first session of his trial, but the authorities were unable to bring him due to security reasons, so the judge informed us that the trial will now start on 17 August," Hisham al-Gaaly told AFP.

The head of Bashir's defence team, Ahmed Ibrahim al-Tahir, said the trial is a criminal one had no "political background".

"It is an absolute criminal case with a baseless accusation."

A prosecutor had read out charges against Bashir in June, in what was his first public appearance since he was overthrown by the military on 11 April.

He will stand trial charged with "possessing foreign currency, corruption and receiving gifts illegally".

Tahir said that one of the charges against Bashir was related to about 7 million euros which were given as a "grant by a donor and was not included in the state budget".

Sudan's army ruler General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan said that more than $113 million worth of cash in three currencies - seven million euros ($7.8 million), $350,000 and five billion Sudanese pounds ($105 million) - was discovered in Bashir's residence, allegedly acquired during his decades-long rule.

Demonstrations against the government erupted in December following the tripling of bread prices. Months-long strikes and protests led to the overthrow of Bashir but the military rulers also launched a bloody clampdown on a sit-in in Khartoum, killing over a hundred people.