Gaddafi has previously said that the ICC decision set a "grave precedent against the independence of less powerful states, their sovereignty and their political choices."

He told Ban Ki-moon, the UN secretary-general that the court was "employing a policy of double standards in targeting African and third-world states".

Al-Bashir abroad

Al-Bashir has travelled to Eritrea and Egypt in recent days. Officials say he is expected to travel to Ethiopia later on Thursday.

The Sudanese president has also visited Darfur twice since the ICC arrest warrant was issued.

Sudan's government said shortly after the ICC decision on March 4 that al-Bashir would defy the warrant by travelling to an Arab summit in the Qatari capital, Doha, on March 30.

Sheikh Hamad bin Jassem Al-Thani, the prime minister of Qatar, travelled to Sudan on Tuesday in an attempt to convince al-Bashir to attend the summit where they will focus on the situation in Darfur.

The Qatari prime minster said during his visit that Doha had been put under pressure from several parties not to receive al-Bashir.

"Doha would not acquiesce to such pressure while al-Bashir is absolutely free to take the appropriate decision about attending the Arab summit," the Qatari prime minister said.

Arrest fears
 
A series of Sudanese officials have released statements questioning the wisdom of the trip, prompting speculation they were preparing to send another representative instead.

A group of Sudanese Islamic scholars have advised al-Bashir not to travel to the Arab League summit.

Al-Bashir responded to the ICC warrant by expelling 13 international aid agencies from Darfur earlier this month.

Experts say at least 200,000 people have been killed and more than 2.7 million driven from their homes in almost six years of ethnic and political fighting in Darfur in western Sudan.

Khartoum says 10,000 people have died.