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Omar al-Bashir could visit SA soon

Omar al-Bashir will be invited to The Forum on China Africa Cooperation scheduled to take place in December.

Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir (R) shakes hands with South African President Jacob Zuma during a meeting on 1 February 1, 2015 in the capital Khartoum. Zuma arrived for an official two-day visit in Khartoum the day before to discuss bilateral cooperation as well as socio-economic development and peace and security issues on the continent. Picture: AFP.

RETORIA - South Africa faces the prospect of another visit by Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir.

The Sudanese leader will be invited to The Forum on China/Africa Cooperation" scheduled to take place in December.

If al-Bashir - accepts the invitation - and chooses to attend - the International Criminal Court (ICC) will remind South Africa of its obligation to turn him over to answer charges of war crimes in Darfur.

He is wanted on charges of crimes against humanity and genocide.

South Africa and Sudan continue to enjoy warm bilateral relations even after government ignored an international arrest warrant and allowed Sudanese leader to leave the country when he attended the African Union summit earlier this year.

Beijing and Pretoria have announced that the meeting in December of the Forum on China/Africa Cooperation's been converted to a summit.

This was revealed in the Chinese capital after celebrations marking the 70th anniversary of the end of the Second World War.

Presidents Jacob Zuma and al-Bashir were among invited guests.

And they held what they called a warm bilateral meeting in Beijing.

Zuma's accepted Bashir's invitation to visit Khartoum.

'ZUMA'S MEETING WITH AL-BASHIR IS AN INSULT TO OUR COURTS'

There are conflicting views as to whether the president should have met with the Sudanese leader, with some saying it's an insult to the courts and others encouraging dialogue between African leaders.

Zuma met with al-Bashir in China on Thursday where the pair committed to strengthening ties.

The meeting was held in Beijing against the backdrop of China's victory celebrations.

Despite controversy over al-Bashir's visit to South Africa a few months ago, the presidency said Zuma and al-Bashir have committed to working together in the fields of agriculture, science, energy and mining.

The Economic Freedom Fighters' Fana Mokwena said while he's not opposed to this meeting, Zuma never seems to be in the country when he should.

South Africa and Sudan continue to enjoy warm bilateral relations, even after government ignored an international arrest warrant and allowed al-Bashir to leave the country when he attended the African Union summit earlier this year.