Wednesday, October 27, 2010

ICC-Kenya-Bashir continued

The International Criminal Court is stepping up pressure on Kenya.
Last month Kenya permitted Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir to attend a Constitution Day celebration in Nairobi -- notwithstanding that Bashir's been indicted by the ICC, nor that Kenya, as an ICC state party, is obliged to cooperate with the court's efforts to secure personal jurisdiction over Bashir.
The safe passage Kenya allowed Bashir in September drew rebuke from U.S. President Barack Obama, as we then posted.
The ICC had made its own complaints a number of times earlier, among them an August bid before the U.N. Security Council.
This past Monday, the ICC sent a new message, this one directly to Kenya.
In its Decision requesting observations from the Republic of Kenya, ICC Pre-Trial Chamber I asked Kenya for information on

any problem which would impede or prevent the arrest and surrender of Omar Al Bashir in the event that he visits the country on 30 October, 2010.
Meanwhile, nearly 2 dozen nongovernmental organizations, representing Africa's civil society, also sent a letter urging Kenya to arrest Bashir.
Kenya's supposed to give its response to the ICC no later than this Friday, the day before the possible visit of the fugitive head of state, in connection with a summit session of IGAD (logo at left), the Djibouti-based Inter-Governmental Authority for Development. That group's expressed "dismay" regarding ICC charges against Bashir.
All this unfolds against the backdrop of Kenya's own problems with the ICC, which is investigating post-election violence in that country. Governmental resistance to inquiry (including that by the truth commission) is stiffening.
Stay tuned.

1 comment:

Ronald said...

Glad you are following this. The latest is that yesterday it was announced that the meeting would be moved to Ethiopia (which is not a party to the Rome Statute), apparently to allow Bashir to attend. Now it is reported that the meeting is postponed for 1-2 weeks. In other words, the pressure against Kenya (both domestic and international) seems to have worked.