Fierce reaction to Omar al-Bashir's return to Sudan

The UN says it takes the charges against him 'extremely seriously' while the US says its 'disappointed'.

President Omar al-Bashir's plane took off from Waterkloof Air Force Base just before midday on 15 June 2015. Alet Pretorius/Beeld/Netwerk24.

JOHANNESBURG - There's been fierce reaction to Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir's return home this evening with the United Nations (UN) saying it takes the charges against him extremely seriously, the US voicing its disappointment and Sudan blaming so called 'African enemies' for creating drama.

The International Criminal Court (ICC) has two outstanding warrants against his alleged genocide in Sudan's western province of Darfur.

The High Court in Pretoria ordered the government to explain how the Sudanese President left South Africa in contravention of an order.

The court found in favour of the Southern African Litigation Centre and ordered al-Bashir's arrest hours after he left the country from Waterkloof Air Force Base.

Democratic Alliance's Leader Mmsui Maimane says all leaders should be held accountable.

"We're a signatory to the ICC and the crimes that get committed in any country, leaders must be held accountable whether the leaders are in Africa or any other part of the globe."

UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon has called on all signatories to the Rome Statute to respect the authority of the ICC and implement its warrants.

Moon voiced his serious concern around al-Bashir's departure during a briefing in Geneva today.

Meanwhile, the US says it's disappointed that South Africa did not take action to prevent al-Bashir from leaving.

State Department spokesperson Jeff Rathke, in a news briefing, declined to say South Africa should have arrested al-Bashir but said "clearly, some action should have been taken."