News / Africa

ICC Orders Arrest of Kenya Journalist for Witness Tampering

ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda is seen at a news conference before the trial of Kenya's Deputy President William Ruto in The Hague in this September 9, 2013, file photo.ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda is seen at a news conference before the trial of Kenya's Deputy President William Ruto in The Hague in this September 9, 2013, file photo.
x
ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda is seen at a news conference before the trial of Kenya's Deputy President William Ruto in The Hague in this September 9, 2013, file photo.
ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda is seen at a news conference before the trial of Kenya's Deputy President William Ruto in The Hague in this September 9, 2013, file photo.
Gabe Joselow
The International Criminal Court has issued an arrest warrant for a former journalist accused of attempting to bribe a witness in the case against Kenyan Deputy President William Ruto. The warrant will test Kenya’s willingness to cooperate with the ICC.

ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda announced Wednesday Kenya has received orders for the immediate arrest of Walter Barasa, and his transfer to the court in The Hague.

In a recorded statement, Bensouda said Barasa was part of a “wider scheme” to interfere with witnesses in the case against the deputy president.

“The evidence collected so far indicates there is a network of people who are trying to sabotage the case against Mr. Ruto by interfering with prosecution witnesses.  Walter Barasa, against whom compelling evidence has been collected, has been part of this network,” said Bensouda.

Kenya's Deputy President William Ruto (R) reacts as he sits in the courtroom before his trial at the ICC in The Hague in this September 10, 2013, file photo.Kenya's Deputy President William Ruto (R) reacts as he sits in the courtroom before his trial at the ICC in The Hague in this September 10, 2013, file photo.
x
Kenya's Deputy President William Ruto (R) reacts as he sits in the courtroom before his trial at the ICC in The Hague in this September 10, 2013, file photo.
Kenya's Deputy President William Ruto (R) reacts as he sits in the courtroom before his trial at the ICC in The Hague in this September 10, 2013, file photo.
She said the issuance of the warrant should be a warning to others.  If convicted, Barasa could face five years in prison.

Barasa told VOA an investigator in the case had alerted him to the impending arrest warrant.  The journalist said he has the “grounds to defend [himself] against the allegations.”

Warrant seen as key test for Kenya

The order came Wednesday as Deputy President Ruto returned to the ICC for the resumption of his trial.  He and President Uhuru Kenyatta are being tried in separate cases for allegedly orchestrating the deadly violence that followed the 2007 presidential election.

Whether Kenya decides to arrest Barasa is a key test of the government’s willingness to cooperate with the ICC, according to Apollo Mboya, head of the Law Society of Kenya.  

“If they don’t execute this particular warrant, then it can be reasonably inferred that in the future, they will not cooperate in other instances,” said Mboya.

While Kenyatta and Ruto have promised to obey ICC orders, they have been lobbying for the court to drop the cases against them, or to refer the cases back to Kenya.  The African Union has also supported the motion.

President Kenyatta is scheduled to stand trial in November.

You May Like

Pundits Split Over Long-Term US Role in Afghanistan

Security pact remains condition for American presence beyond 2014; deadline criticized More

US Eyes Islamic State Threat

Officials warn that IS could pose a threat to US homeland More

Video Ukraine: Captured Troops Proof of Russian Role in Separatist Fight

Moscow says Russian troops crossed into Ukrainian territory by mistake More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Xaaji Dhagax from: Somalia
October 03, 2013 2:56 AM
It seems that this ridiculous ICC is being created solely to persecute exclusively for AFRICAN former leaders, sitting presidents, vice presidents and journalists. Short while ago the world was shown horrific images of hundred of thousand of children and women gassed to death by their own leader. ICC persecutor is not calling the persecution of that particular leader. Unfortunately ICC unfairly targets African leaders, therefore, African governments should rightfully consider the withdrawal of being party of Rome Statute.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Scientists Unlock Mystery of Bird Flocksi
X
George Putic
August 25, 2014 4:00 PM
How can flocks of birds, schools of fish or herds of antelope suddenly change direction -- all the individuals adjusting their movement in concert, at seemingly the same time? British researchers now have some insights into this behavior, which has puzzled scientists for a long time. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video Scientists Unlock Mystery of Bird Flocks

How can flocks of birds, schools of fish or herds of antelope suddenly change direction -- all the individuals adjusting their movement in concert, at seemingly the same time? British researchers now have some insights into this behavior, which has puzzled scientists for a long time. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video Ukraine: Captured Troops Proof of Russian Role in Separatist Fight

Ukrainian officials say they have captured Russian soldiers on Ukrainian territory -- the latest accusation of Moscow's involvement in the conflict in eastern Ukraine. VOA's Gabe Joselow reports from the Ukrainian side of the battle, where soldiers are convinced of Russia's role.
Video

Video Rubber May Soon Come From Dandelions

Synthetic rubber has been around for more than a century, but quality tires for cars, trucks and aircraft still need up to 40 percent or more natural rubber content. As the source of natural rubber, the rubber tree, is prone to disease and can be affected by bad weather. So scientists are looking for replacements. And as VOA’s George Putic reports, they may have found one in a ubiquitous weed.
Video

Video Jewish Life in Argentina Reflected in Yiddish Tango

Jewish people from across Europe and Russia have been immigrating to Argentina for hundreds of years. They brought with them dance music that was eventually mixed with Argentine tango. The result is Yiddish tango -- a fusion of melodies and cultural experiences that is still evolving today. Elizabeth Lee reports on how one band is bringing Yiddish tango to Los Angeles.
Video

Video Peace Returns to Ferguson as Community Tries to Heal

Thousands of people nationwide are expected to attend funeral services Monday in the U.S. Midwestern city of St. Louis, Missouri, for Michael Brown, the unarmed African-American teenager who was fatally shot by a white police officer August 9 in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson. The shooting touched off days of violent demonstrations there, resulting in more than 100 arrests. VOA's Chris Simkins reports from Ferguson where the community is trying to move on after weeks of racial tension.
Video

Video Meeting in Minsk May Hinge on Putin Story

The presidents of Russia and Ukraine are expected to meet face-to-face Tuesday in Minsk, along with European leaders, for talks on the situation in Ukraine. Political analysts say the much welcomed dialogue could help bring an end to months of deadly clashes between pro-Russia separatists and Ukrainian forces in the country's southeast. But much depends on the actions of one man, Russian President Vladimir Putin. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
Video

Video Artists Shun Russia's Profanity Law

Russia in July enacted a law threatening fines for publicly displayed profanity in media, films, literature, music and theater. The restriction, the toughest since the Soviet era, aims to protect the Russian language and culture and has been welcomed by those who say cursing is getting out of control. But many artists reject the move as a patronizing and ineffective act of censorship in line with a string of conservative morality laws. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
Video

Video British Fighters on Frontline of ISIS Information War

Security services are racing to identify the Islamic State militant who beheaded U.S. journalist James Foley in Syria. The murderer spoke English on camera with a British accent. It’s estimated that several hundred British citizens are fighting for the Islamic State, also called ISIL or ISIS, alongside thousands of other foreign jihadists. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from the center of the investigation in London.

AppleAndroid