Monday, May 27, 2013

ICC Troubled by African Union Threats of Withdrawal

. . . Rome Statute criticises Africa’s threats

Monday, 27 May 2013 00:00

THE HAGUE — The International Criminal Court (ICC) has criticised the African Union over the plot to unanimously withdraw from the Rome Statute that establishes it.

The ICC Prosecution says that the “unflinching commitment to combating impunity and promoting democracy, the rule of law and good governance throughout the entire African continent in conformity with its Constitutive Act” is being disregarded by the African Union.

The ICC Prosecution says that it “deeply regrets the request by the African Union (AU) to the United Nations (UN) Security Council to defer the proceedings initiated against President Bashir of Sudan and Senior State Official of Kenya.”

Three Kenyans including President Uhuru Kenyatta, Deputy President William Ruto and radioman Joshua Arap Sang are facing charges of crimes against humanity at The Hague-based court.

The ICC Prosecution has reaffirmed its previous decisions on the ICC activities in Africa adopted in January and July 2009, January and July 2010, January 2011 and July 2011, January and July 2012 respectively, in which it expresses its strong conviction that the search for justice should be pursued in a way that does not impede or jeopardize efforts aimed at promoting lasting peace.

The ICC further stressed that “the need for international justice be conducted in a transparent and fair manner, in order to avoid any perception of double standard in conformity with the principles of international law.”

It further dismissed claims that the indictment of Kenyatta and Ruto, may lead the country in the wrong direction creating instability and insecurity.

“Pursuant to the principle of complementarity enshrined in the Rome Statute of the ICC, Kenya has primary jurisdiction over the investigations and prosecutions of crimes in relation to the 2007 post-election violence.

“In this regard, the decisions of the Pre-Trial Chamber II and the Appeals Chamber of the ICC on the admissibility of the cases dated 30th May and 30th August 2011 respectively, which denied the right of Kenya to prosecute and try alleged perpetrators of crimes committed on its territory in relation to the2007 post-election violence, is well within the Rome Statute,” said the ICC Prosecution.


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