Nairobi, December 20, 2011 (FH) - The Kenyan Court of Appeal has refused to grant temporary suspension of an arrest order against Sudanese President Omar al Bashir.

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The court ruled that an application by Attorney General Githu Muigai was "insufficient and unconvincing", and that the November 28 High Court order remains in force. According to that ruling, Kenyan authorities must arrest Bashir if he sets foot in Kenya. Bashir is wanted by the International Criminal Court for genocide and crimes against humanity allegedly committed in Darfur.

Arguing the case before the Court of Appeal, Deputy Solicitor General Muthoni Kimani asked the court to lift the arrest warrant because it had affected bilateral relations between Kenya and Sudan.

The Attorney General had sought the suspension following an ultimatum by the Sudanese President. Bashir had given Kenya two weeks to overturn the High Court decision or face sanctions, including a ban on flights to Kenya entering Sudanese airspace.  

The High Court case was brought by the International Commission of Jurists after Bashir came to Kenya in 2010. He was not arrested at that time, despite the fact that Kenya is a signatory to the ICC's founding treaty.


© Hirondelle News Agency