African Union Summit Ends In Chaos As South Africa Keeps Trying To Arrest World Leaders

African Union Summit Ends In Chaos As South Africa Keeps Trying To Arrest World Leaders

The weekend summit of the African Union, a group of leaders from across Africa, descended into chaos on Sunday as Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir was forced to flee South Africa because of an international warrant for his arrest.

South Africa, hardly a shining example of morals, decided that its High Court should decide whether he should be handed over to the International Criminal Court, which charged him with war crimes.

Mr Bashir isn't the only African leader South Africa tried to arrest at the summit. Egyptian president Abdel Fattah el-Sisi decided not to attend because South Africa wanted to arrest him as well.

The political tactic is bizarre and shows a desperate South Africa is trying to assert itself within Africa despite little basis to do so. While the most developed country on the continent, it has been plagued with scandal, corruption and a wave of xenophobia, which resulted in the public killing of Emmanuel Sithole, an immigrant from Mozambique.

Yet as it loses control of its own country it seems to want to, selectively, meddle in the affairs of its neighbors.

Its approach is haphazard. In trying to arrest el-Sisi the country kowtowed to radical Islamist lawyers who targeted the only rational leader in the middle east. And while Bashir likely deserves to be in jail for his brutal regime, so too does Robert Mugabe, the current chair of the AU.

To target Bashir and not Mugabe is truly bizarre.

Its even more bizarre, given a large number of African countries have decided not to cooperate with the ICC, citing racism and bias against African leaders.

By trying to apprehend leaders of its trade group, South Africa is destroying both its own credibility and that of the African Union.

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