News / Africa

ICC: Kenya's Ruto Must Attend Trial

An April 2011 Combination picture shows Kenya's Uhuru Kenyatta, who was finance minister, and William Ruto, former Higher Education Minister at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague.
An April 2011 Combination picture shows Kenya's Uhuru Kenyatta, who was finance minister, and William Ruto, former Higher Education Minister at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague.
Gabe Joselow
The International Criminal Court has reversed a decision allowing Kenyan Deputy President William Ruto to be absent for parts of his trial.  The decision, announced Friday, is a major setback for Kenya’s leaders, who are seeking ways to avoid attending trial.
 
Appeals court judges ruled unanimously that the court was wrong in granting Ruto conditional permission to skip portions of his trial.
 
He and Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta are charged in separate but similar cases for allegedly orchestrating the inter-ethnic violence that followed the presidential election of 2007, in which more than 1,100 people were killed.
 
Reading a summary of the ruling, Judge Song Sang-hyun said any decisions to excuse Ruto from parts of his trial should be considered on a case-by-case basis.
 
“The absence of the accused can only take place in exceptional circumstances and must not become the rule," Sang said.
 
In June, trial chamber judges ruled that Ruto would not have to appear continuously at The Hague, but that he would have to be present for opening and closing statements, judgments and when victims testify.
 
Kenyatta, who is due to attend the opening of his trial in November, was granted the same reprieve last week.
 
Apollo Mboya, head of the Law Society of Kenya, expects a similar ruling against Kenyatta, should the prosecutor appeal his exemption.
 
“It’s most likely that they are going to give a similar ruling since the ICC is very clear that the suspects before it are not there in their official capacity, but as individuals," Mboya said. "So it is fair and reasonable to predict that is going to be the same ruling that they are going to give in the Kenyatta case.”
 
The Kenyatta administration, backed by the African Union, has been lobbying the United Nations Security Council to push for a deferral of the two cases.
 
In identical letters sent to the Council earlier this month, Kenya and the AU cited security concerns in Kenya following the terrorist siege on Nairobi’s Westgate mall as reason for a deferral.  
 
The letters argue that the proceedings against Kenya’s two leaders will prevent them from fulfilling their duties, including “oversight for national and regional security affairs.”

You May Like

Turbulent Transition Imperils Tunisia’s Arab Spring Gains

Critics say new anti-terrorism laws worsen Tunisia's situation while others put faith in country’s vibrant civil organizations, women’s movement More

Burundi’s Political Crisis May Become Humanitarian One

United Nations aid agencies issue warning as deadly violence sends tens of thousands fleeing More

Yemenis Adjust to Life Under Houthi Rule

Locals want warring parties to strike deal to stop bloodletting before deciding how country is governed More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Xaaji Dhagax from: Somalia
October 25, 2013 8:41 PM
ICC is just trying to show it's true colour and it's arrogance towards black leaders for all to see. Recently elected president and deputy president, Uhuru Kenyatta and William Ruto were unanimously granted permissions to skip portions of their trial by ICC judges. Now the same judges reversed their decision for apparently no specific reasons. Kenyatta and Ruto desperately needed to skip their trial proceedings to deal with very dangerous pressing issues at home; terrorism, high unemployment, poverty and unprecedented number of refugees pouring in from neighbouring countries. Both gentlemen openly vowed earlier to cooperate with ICC, in return they are now embarrassed and humiliated in public domain. The world allowed this Court to behave however they want. African leaders should not allow to be treated cruelly and unjustly. We, as Africans, have suffered oppressions for very long time. Now it's 2013 one has to stop THIS.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Seoul Sponsors Korean Unification Fairi
X
Brian Padden
May 29, 2015 1:27 PM
With inter-Korean relations deteriorating over the North’s nuclear program, past military provocations and human rights abuses, many Koreans still hold out hope for eventual peaceful re-unification. VOA’s Brian Padden visited a “unification fair” held this week in Seoul, where border communities promoted the benefits of increased cooperation.
Video

Video Seoul Sponsors Korean Unification Fair

With inter-Korean relations deteriorating over the North’s nuclear program, past military provocations and human rights abuses, many Koreans still hold out hope for eventual peaceful re-unification. VOA’s Brian Padden visited a “unification fair” held this week in Seoul, where border communities promoted the benefits of increased cooperation.
Video

Video Purple Door Coffeeshop: Changing Lives One Cup at a Time

For a quarter of his life, Kevin Persons lived on the street. Today, he is working behind the counter of an espresso bar, serving coffee and working to transition off the streets and into a home. Paul Vargas reports for VOA.
Video

Video Modular Robot Getting Closer to Reality

A robot being developed at Carnegie Mellon University has evolved into a multi-legged modular mechanical snake, able to move over rugged surfaces and explore the surroundings. Scientists say such machines could someday help in search and rescue operations. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Shanghai Hosts Big Consumer Electronics Show

Electronic gadgets are a huge success in China, judging by the first Asian Consumer Electronics Show, held this week in Shanghai. Over the course of two days, more than 20,000 visitors watched, tested and played with useful and some less-useful electronic devices exhibited by about 200 manufacturers. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Forced to Return Home, Afghan Refugees Face Increased Hardship

Undocumented refugees returning to Afghanistan from Pakistan have no jobs, no support system, and no home return to, and international aid agencies say they and the government are overwhelmed and under-resourced. Ayesha Tanzeem has more from Kabul.
Video

Video Britain Makes Controversial Move to Crack Down on Extremism

Britain is moving to tighten controls on extremist rhetoric, even when it does not incite violence or hatred -- a move that some are concerned might unduly restrict basic freedoms. It is an issue many countries are grappling with as extremist groups gain power in the Middle East, fueled in part by donations and fighters from the West. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video 3D Printer Makes Replica of Iconic Sports Car

Cars with parts made by 3D printers are already on the road, but engineers are still learning about this new technology. While testing the possibility of printing an entire car, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy recently created an electric-powered replica of an iconic sports roadster. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Al-Shabab Recruitment Drive Still on In Kenya

The al-Shabab militants that have long battled for control of Somalia also have recruited thousands of young people in Kenya, leaving many families disconsolate. Mohammed Yusuf recently visited the Kenyan town of Isiolo, and met with relatives of those recruited, as well as a many who have helped with the recruiting.
Video

Video A Small Oasis on Kabul's Outskirts Provides Relief From Security Tensions

When people in Kabul want to get away from the city and relax, many choose Qargha Lake, a small resort on the outskirts of Kabul. Ayesha Tanzeem visited and talked with people about the precious oasis.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.

VOA Blogs