News / Africa

Kenya’s Deputy Leader to Appear during ICC Trial

Combination picture shows Kenya's then-finance minister Uhuru Kenyatta and Kenya's former Higher Education Minister William Ruto at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague in these April 8, 2011 (L)  and September 1, 2011 file photos.
Combination picture shows Kenya's then-finance minister Uhuru Kenyatta and Kenya's former Higher Education Minister William Ruto at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague in these April 8, 2011 (L) and September 1, 2011 file photos.
Peter Clottey
The International Criminal Court (ICC) has ruled that Kenya’s deputy president, William Ruto, must attend key segments of his trial on charges of crimes against humanity scheduled to begin in September, according to a court spokesman.

Ruto and Kenya President Uhuru Kenyatta face similar charges before the court in connection with their alleged role in the country’s 2007-2008 post-election violence.

“The trial chamber has decided to grant the excusal from being present at the trial, except for key hearings of the opening, the closing, the statements of the parties, and when the victims will be presenting their personal concerns and views as well as when the verdict will be pronounced. And eventually if applicable, all the issues related to sentencing and reparations for the victims,” said Fadi el-Abdallah, ICC spokesman.                                                

Ruto’s defense attorneys had petitioned the court to excuse him from having to attend the trial. They also requested that Ruto be allowed to use a video-link during his trial. 

El-Abdallah said that since the trial chamber granted the request to excuse Ruto from being present during all of the trial, the judges did not need to examine the subsidiary request for the video link.

Some Kenyans criticized the ruling, saying the demand for Ruto to be present during throughout trial would put financial strain on the country, since he would have to be accompanied by a security detail because of his status as a leader in Kenya. They contend that a video link would save taxpayers money. El-Abdallah disagreed.

He says Mr. Ruto would be on trial not as the deputy president of the East African nation, but as a person accused as one of the masterminds of the post-poll violence.

“The ICC is not trying the deputy president of Kenya,” continued el-Abdallah, “the person who is at trial before the ICC is Mr. Ruto in his personal capacity and not in his official capacity. So, he is requested to be here in his personal capacity, and not as the deputy head of state.” 

Fatou Bensouda, the ICC prosecutor, recently threatened to report Kenya’s government to the United Nations Security Council if the country refused to fully cooperate with the court in the cases against both President Kenyatta and Ruto.

She also said Kenya’s attorney general, Githu Muigai, had blocked the ICC’s investigative team from collecting evidence and talking to witnesses. But Muigai rejected the allegation and accused Bensouda of “peddling unsupported claims based on paranoia, misunderstandings or false conclusions.”

El-Abdallah said the judges are considering the impasse between the office of the prosecutor and Kenya’s government.

“There is no decision, yet but the different views have been expressed and observations submitted to the judges, who can decide on what will be the correct and adequate measures to implement here,” said el-Abdallah.

“It is not for the prosecutor to bring issues of non-cooperation to the Security Council. It’s only for the judges to make findings eventually of non-cooperation of a state that has the obligation to cooperate with the ICC…the issue of the Security Council can be used only if investigations have been open upon a request by the Security Council, which is not the case for Kenya,” el-Abdallah clarified.                           

The trial for Mr. Ruto is scheduled for September 10.

The ICC accuses Ruto and President Kenyatta of playing a role in Kenya’s 2007-2008 post-election violence that left about 1,300 dead and hundreds of thousands displaced from their homes.
Clottey interview with Fadi el-Abdallah, ICC spokesman
Clottey interview with Fadi el-Abdallah, ICC spokesmani
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X

You May Like

India PM Modi's party distances itself from religious conversions

BJP under fire for being slow to rein in hardline affiliate groups allegedly trying to promote a Hindu-dominant agenda by luring Muslims and Christians to convert to Hinduism More

Anti-Whaling Group Found in Contempt of Court

Radical environmentalists who threw acid and smoke bombs at Japanese whalers in the waters off Antarctica continue their campaign to disrupt Japan's annual whale hunt More

UN's Ban Urges End to Discrimination Against Ebola Workers

Ban was speaking in Guinea on the second day of a whistle-stop tour aimed at thanking healthcare workers of the countries at the heart of the epidemic 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.
Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacksi
X
December 19, 2014 12:45 AM
The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Putin Says Russian Economy Will Emerge Stronger

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said his country's sinking economy will not only recover but also become stronger, despite falling oil prices and Western sanctions over Ukraine. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Detained Turkish Journalists Follow Teachings of US-Based Preacher

The Turkish government’s jailing of critical journalists has sparked international condemnation and is being seen as an effort to undermine the followers of an ailing Turkish preacher based in the United States. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.

All About America

AppleAndroid