Tuesday, January 24, 2012

ICC in the Media, Update #58

This week the media once again focused on the ICC's activities in Kenya. As we reported yesterday, the ICC judges have confirmed charges against four of the "Kenya six." The four include Uhuru Kenyatta, William Ruto (both 2012 presidential hopefuls), Francis Mathaura and radio-presenter Joshua Sang. Several of those against whom charges have been confirmed have made statements maintaining their innocence and have expressed their intention to appeal the decision.

Charges have been dropped against Henry Kosgey and Hussein Ali. Ahead of the announcement many (including ICC judges) were fearful the decision would prompt violence within Kenya, but those fears appear not to have materialized. The ICC prosecutor issued a statement congratulating Kenya on remaining calm in the wake of the announcement. Ocompo also stated that he will not be appealing the decision dismissing the charges against Kosgey and Ali, although the Office of the Prosecutor will continue investigating their role in the violence. Kosgey has reportedly also commented on the decision, and expressed his happiness that he has been exonerated.

Also in the Kenya case, newly confirmed defendant William Ruto has reportedly reassured the public that he still intends to run for President of Kenya in the upcoming election. The Commission for the Implementation of the Constitution has come forward saying that it does not believe the new constitution would compel Kenyatta or Ruto to step down from the race. Whether the two suspects will ultimately be able to run for President remains unclear. Reportedly victims of the 2007/2008 post-election violence are pleased with the confirmation of charges, but remain unsatisfied that the lower-level perpetrators of the crimes continue to walk free. Perhaps to rectify this, the Attorney General has reportedly stated that a new division of the Supreme Court may be created to deal domestically with cases related to the election violence. In other news, there have been conflicting reports about the status of whether Saif al-Islam, Gaddafi's son, will be tried in Libya. Reportedly Libya's justice minister has confirmed that he will be tried domestically in Libya. In response, a spokesperson for the ICC has said that the ICC has not yet made a decision on the matter. Photo credit: Voice of America.

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