13 February 2013

Kenya: Election Violence Cases Difficult - ICC President

International Criminal Court President Sang-Hyun Song has said it is difficult to predict the outcome of the Kenya cases at the Hague as there are "so many variables."

Four suspects are accused of fueling the bloodshed during the 2007/8 post election violence in Kenya. Two of the suspects, Uhuru Kenyatta and William Ruto are running together on a presidential ticket in the March 4 elections. The trials are expected to begin in April.

Kenya is set to hold a runoff on the 11th of April if none of the presidential candidates fails to meet a constitutional threshold of 50 plus one per cent nationally and win by at 25 per cent in 24 of the 47 counties.

Speaking at the Colombia University in New York, Song said there were challenges in the Kenya case "At the moment, I must admit that the logistics aspect of the Kenya case, for example, is not necessarily easy," Song said.

"These four suspects are under summons to appear. They are not arrested people. They kept on saying they will comply with the ICC procedures and so on and so forth."How they will come all the way to The Hague to attend the trial and for how long?" He added

The ICC and the Obama administration in particular have been enjoying rather close cooperation, although the the USA is not signatory to the Rome statute.

On Tuesday last week Obama will respect the will of the Kenyan people but on thursdays Secretary of State for African Affairs Johny Carson clarified that Kenyans are free to choose whoever they want but that "choices have consequences"

Uhuru Kenyatta and William Ruto, will participate in an ICC status conference through video -link tomorrow. Their co-accused Francis Muthaura and Joshua Sang traveled to The Hague on Tuesday night for the status conference which will discuss issues pertaining to the commencement of trial.

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