News / Africa

ICC: 4 Kenyans to Face Trial for Post-Election Violence

Suspects: Top from left, Mohammed Hussein Ali, Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta, William Samoei Ruto; Henry Kiprono Kosgey, Joshua Arap Sang, Francis Kirimi Muthaura (undated file image).
Suspects: Top from left, Mohammed Hussein Ali, Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta, William Samoei Ruto; Henry Kiprono Kosgey, Joshua Arap Sang, Francis Kirimi Muthaura (undated file image).

The Hague-based International Criminal Court, or ICC, has ruled that four Kenyans accused of masterminding Kenya’s 2007-to-2008 post-election violence must stand trial, while charges against two other Kenyans were dropped due to insufficient evidence.

Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Uhuru Kenyatta, former agriculture and higher education minister William Ruto, civil service head Francis Muthaura, and radio presenter Joshua Sang will all have their day in court.

Meanwhile, Postmaster General and former police commissioner Mohammed Hussein Ali and suspended industrialization minister Henry Kosgey are off the hook. All six Kenyans faced various charges related to the countrywide ethnic violence that followed the bitterly disputed 2007 elections in which more than 300,000 people were displaced and some 1,300 were killed.

Shortly after the ICC's announcement Monday, presidential hopeful William Ruto held a press conference at his Nairobi residence that aired on Kenyan television. At one point, he addressed his presidential competitors saying, in his words, "let us meet at the ballot."

"I have been, I am, and I will forever be a stranger to the allegations that have been made against me," said Ruto. "As a result, while a decision to confirm the charges has been made, my legal team will move expeditiously to analyze different actions that we will take as a team. I am persuaded and I am clear in my mind that it doesn’t matter how long it takes -- the truth finally will prevail and my innocence confirmed."

Kenyatta, meanwhile, said he is still planning to run for president in the east African country's upcoming elections, the exact date of which remains unknown.

ICC prosecutors had accused the six suspects of various crimes against humanity. In the cases of Ruto, Kosgey and Sang, charges included murder, deportation or forcible transfer of a population and persecution. Charges levied against Kenyatta, Muthaura and Ali included murder, deportation or forcible transfer of a population, rape, persecution and inhumane acts.

Evidence against Kosgey and Ali was ruled insufficient for trial, but the court will proceed with cases against Ruto, Kenyatta, Muthaura and Sang. Opening dates for the trials have not been set.

The ruling, which was delivered from The Hague Monday by ICC Judge Ekaterina Trendafilova, warned suspects not to engage in any behavior that could compromise their cases or the well-being of Kenyans.

"At this point, the chamber recalls its previous warning to the suspects that their continued liberty is subject to their non-engagement in incitements of violence or hate speech," she said.

She emphasized that Monday’s ruling was merely whether to go forward with the cases based on evidence and did not establish suspects’ guilt or innocence.

George Wainaina, chairman of Kenya's National Council of Non-Governmental Organizations, said he welcomed Monday’s developments, calling it a radical departure from the Kenya of the past.

"We have suffered impunity a great deal," he said. "A lot of things have been done without any thought somebody might query this. The fact that some people have been taken to court helps in curbing or bringing down impunity."

Ahead of the ICC ruling, Kenyan government authorities said they were tightening security and appealed to Kenyans to remain calm and act peacefully. There are concerns the ruling could kick up protests or new violence in the country, where many Kenyans, including some lawmakers, say the country should conduct its own trials of the post-election violence suspects.

You May Like

Katrina Brought Enduring Changes to New Orleans

The city’s recovery is the result of the people and culture the city is famous for, as well as newcomers and start-up industries More

China to Open Stock Markets to Pension Funds

In unprecedented move, government to soon allow local pension funds to invest up to $94 billion in domestic shares More

Magical Photo Slides Show Native Americans in Late 1800s

Walter McClintock spent 20 years photographing the Blackfoot Indians and their vanishing culture at the dawn of the modern age More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs