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Published On: Sat, Feb 1st, 2014

Africa Union urges united stand against ICC trials

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In this photo released by the Kenya Presidency, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta, right, and Deputy President William Ruto, left, chat after arriving back from the African Union (AU) summit in Addis Ababa, at the airport in Nairobi, Kenya, Saturday, Feb. 1, 2014. The African Union urged its members to “speak with one voice” against criminal proceedings at the International Criminal Court against sitting presidents, according to a statement Saturday, saying it was disappointed that a request to the U.N. Security Council to defer the trials of Kenya’s leaders “has not yielded the positive result expected.” KENYA PRESIDENCY — AP Photo

ADDIS ABABA, ETHIOPIA — The African Union urged its members to “speak with one voice” to prevent criminal proceedings at the International Criminal court against sitting presidents, according to a statement Saturday.

The 54-nation organization said it was disappointed that a request to the U.N. Security Council to defer the trials of Kenya’s leaders “has not yielded the positive result expected.” The African Union also has sought the deferral of criminal proceedings against Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir, who has been charged with genocide in Darfur.

Only Botswana has opposed the stand taken by the African Union, made in a statement received Saturday after a summit in Ethiopia attended by 34 leaders.

“African states parties should comply with African Union decisions on the ICC and continue to speak with one voice,” the statement said, adding “There is an imperative need for all member states to ensure that they adhere to and articulate commonly agreed positions …”

Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto face charges of crimes against humanity at the international court at The Hague for allegedly orchestrating post-election violence that killed more than 1,000 people following a disputed presidential election in late 2007. Both men deny the charges.

The International Criminal Court has recently come under strong criticism from African leaders who accuse it of racism in indicting only Africans. Countries such as Uganda have suggested they may decide to sever ties with the court in solidarity with Kenya. Some Africans also argue that the Kenyan leaders need to concentrate on governing their countries to ensure stability as the region faces unprecedented terrorist challenges.

Ruto’s trial continues at The Hague but the case against Kenyatta may collapse. Kenyatta’s trial was to start in November but was postponed to February after the prosecution and defense teams said they needed more time to prepare. The prosecutor in December asked for an additional three-month adjournment after one witness withdrew and another said they gave false evidence.

A Kenyan court on Friday refused to stop the arrest of a journalist wanted by the international court for allegedly interfering with prosecution witnesses in the case against Ruto


 Source:Associated Press

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  1. Gelle says:

    I wish this so called African leaders, have put all their energies in helping poor African masses, instead of selfishly defending one of its own, who committed crime against poor Africans themselves.

  2. CS27 says:

    @Gelle
    I agree, all these leaders are just taking the title of being a leader and protecting themselves instead of helping their own starving people(as seen on TV).I always see on TV skinny dying people living in shanty houses and big fat arrogant leaders who stole all their wealth.

  3. kabocalaf says:

    well they would wouldnt they? The prideless, thieving, venal murderous collection of peanut-brained scumbags we call leaders are all in it to varying degrees(few exceptions of course including the Great Silanyo of course..Happy myy Reer Jaamac waal bros?) . Think of brain-dead, mouth wide-open morons like Museveni, Mugabe, Kenyatta, Biya, Campaorae, Zuma, Kabila, Bashir, Bongo boy, Ngeuma..the list goes on. All criminals and thieves and some with blood on their hands.

    Of course the Hague does not appeal all that much..

  4. Mohamed says:

    Why is commenting on energy and mineral minister's article disabled? this issue is related to the same subject we're commenting on here. Which is the protection of the criminal leadership in Africa. What does he do for Somaliland and it's citizens except roaming abroad using our poor taxpayers money to collect money for his own pocket? Why not commenting on our own problems and leadership, where is the transparency and democracy? Let us focus on own problem first and let us not forget that the charity begins at home.
    Somaliland scores big at international mining summit ha? you are funny!

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