The International Criminal Court has come under
heavy criticism over its failure to defer two Kenyan
cases in The Hague.
According to UN Ambassador Macharia Kamau, the
current request that was filed on Monday, follows on
previous attempts by Kenya and other signatories of
the ICC treaty “to try to have reason prevail at the
ICC.”
During an interview with the Nation on Tuesday, the
envoy said the pleas to the court “are now recognised
as having been rational and proportional to the
challenge that Kenya faces.”
He reiterated that by rejecting these initiatives, the
ICC “has proven itself to be inflexible and tone deaf
and thus unable to accommodate the challenges that
a member state is facing, specifically in the context
of the Kenya cases.”
EXCUSED FROM TRIAL
Kenya has successfully swayed world opinion on the
issue of allowing President Kenyatta and his deputy
William Ruto to remain in Kenya during parts of the
proceedings in The Hague, Ambassador Kamau
noted.
Last week, the ICC excused President Uhuru Kenyatta
from continuously attending his trial proceedings at
The Hague. (VIDEO: ICC allows Uhuru to skip
sessions)
On Friday, the Hague-based court will rule on
whether to allow a similar request by Deputy
President William Ruto.
However, Ambassador Kamau said continuous
presence during the proceedings “is now universally
recognised as counterproductive, onerous and
untenable.”
“Not even the procedural moralists in the Assembly
of State Parties [the grouping of ICC member
countries] support the continuous presence of the
leaders at the court anymore,” he said.
There is only a single request for deferral and if
granted, it “would have comprehensive effect on all
the cases related to Kenya,” the Ambassador said.
AU RESOLVE
“Suggesting otherwise is pure conjecture and or
politics,” he added.
The African Union’s resolution that sitting African
Presidents be exempt also received backing. (VIDEO:
Uhuru ICC case a dilemma for the West)
“For the Security Council, facing up to one country is
one thing; facing up to an entire continent is a
completely different proposition,” he said.
He noted that the African Union has directed Kenya
to present a request for deferral on its behalf.
The Ambassador noted that postponing the case for
one year would give “all other interested parties time
to re-evaluate the process of the cases in the context
of the Kenya situation.”
A deferral would further ensure that the interests of
“peace and security in Kenya as well as in
neighbouring countries are indeed secured”, he
added.
The Security Council is able to grant a deferral of ICC
cases only if its member states agree, in accordance
with the UN Charter, that such an action is needed to
“maintain or restore international peace and
security.”

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