Without information, no reconciliation

08.10.14 – ICC/KENYA – JUDGES DECIDING ON KENYAN PRESIDENT'S CASE

The Hague, October 8, 2014 (FH) – Judges of the International Criminal Court (ICC) are now deliberating on what to do with the crimes against humanity case of Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta.

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The Prosecution says his government has failed to produce key documents and wants the trial postponed indefinitely until it does. The Defence says the prosecution has no case, and is asking for the whole thing to be dropped.This follows a status conference on Wednesday in which Kenyatta became the first sitting President to appear before the ICC, although he did so in the capacity of an ordinary individual. He chose not to make a speech and deferred to his lawyers to answer questions.Kenyatta is charged with crimes against humanity committed during post-election violence in his country that followed elections at the end of 2007. He protests his innocence.The trial has already been postponed several times, owing partly to the withdrawal of key prosecution witnesses. Prosecutors say witnesses have been pressured.Prosecutors on Wednesday also asked the Court to impose sanctions on the Kenyan government if it deems that the authorities are indeed failing to comply with their obligations under the Rome Statute, the ICC's founding treaty. Kenya is a States Party (member) of the Court.The presiding judge suggested at one point that the case might be postponed until after the ICC Assembly of States Parties due to take place in New York in December.Prosecutors say key documents allegedly being withheld include records of Kenyatta's phone or phones in the run-up to the violence, records of his bank accounts and assets. The prosecution suspects that he was in contact with, and providing funding for members of the Mungiki militia which spearheaded much of the violence.Nairobi says it is cooperating fully.SM/JC/ER

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