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Archive for August, 2010

The Epoch Times Marco’t Hoen Aug 29 2010

Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga on Sunday said it was wrong of the country to invite Sudanese President Omar Al-Bashir to the ceremony for the signing of Kenya’s new constitution on Friday.

Odinga was unaware that Bashir had been invited to the ceremony, the Sudan Tribune Reported.

Bashir is wanted for crimes against humanity by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for his role in genocide in Sudan’s Darfur region.

Kenya is a signatory of the ICC and is obligated to arrest Bashir and turn him over to the ICC in The Hague.

When Odinga spoke Sunday at a special prayer service in Nairobi to celebrate the new constitution, he said Bashir’s presence and failure of the Kenyan government to arrest him was wrong, and that Kenya must honor its obligations as a signatory of the Rome Statute and other international agreements.

“We must foster good neighborliness, that is very important and that’s why we invited neighbors to come, but if you have a neighbor who is a witch, you don’t invite them to a party,” the prime minister said, according to the Kenyan based privately owned news company, Capital News.

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AFP Aug 29 2010

Former UN chief Kofi Annan said on Sunday Kenya should clarify its position on the International Criminal Court after it last week hosted Sudan’s Omar al-Bashir, wanted for genocide.

“Like many, I was surprised by the presence of President Al-Bashir of Sudan in Nairobi for the promulgation of Kenya?s new constitution,” Annan said in a statement in his capacity as chair of the Panel of Eminent African Personalities.

“Kenya has specific obligations as a signatory of the Rome statute and is also cooperating with the International Criminal Court on investigations relating to the 2007/8 election violence,” said the text issued in Nairobi.

“In the circumstances, the government should clarify its position and reaffirm its cooperation with and commitment to the ICC,” said Annan, whose team brokered a power-sharing deal between Kenyan President Mwai Kabaki and his former foe turned prime minister Raila Odinga after the 2008 violence.

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VOA New Aug 29 2010

Kenya has rejected international criticism over the inclusion of Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir in Friday’s Promulgation Day festivities.  The east African nation has defended its actions as necessary for regional stability and national security.

At a news conference in Nairobi, members of the Kenyan government defended the decision to invite controversial Sudanese leader Omar al-Bashir to the Friday signing of the country’s new constitution.  The International Criminal Court has issued two warrants for Mr. Bashir under allegations of war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide in Darfur.

Kenya, a signatory to the court, was blasted by the international community for failing to arrest Mr. Bashir and present him to The Hague.

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ICC Asks for UN Action

VOA News Aug 28 2010

The International Criminal Court is asking the U.N. Security Council to take action against Kenya for hosting Sudan’s president in defiance of international warrants for his arrest.

ICC judges in The Hague said Friday Kenya has a “clear obligation” as a member of the court to cooperate in enforcing its arrest warrants for Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir.

Mr. Bashir was one of several regional leaders who traveled to Nairobi for Friday’s ceremonial signing of the new Kenyan constitution.  Kenyan Foreign Minister Moses Wetangula says Mr. Bashir was invited because he is the head of a friendly neighboring state.

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More Stories:

Daily Nation

BBC on Kenya Constitution Signing

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Max Fisher August 29, 2010 The Atlantic Wire

A leaked United Nations report on the Rwandan genocide makes the explosive charge that the Rwandan Army, long credited with helping to end the infamous 1994 genocide of ethnic Tutsis, committed hundreds of acts of genocide against ethnic Hutu refugees in 1996-1997. The document, first reported by French newspaper Le Monde, states, “The majority of the victims were children, women, elderly people and the sick, who were often undernourished and posed no threat to the attacking forces.” The report implicates much of Rwanda’s current government, including President Paul Kagame, in joining with Congolese rebels to slaughter Rwandan refugees who had fled to the Congo. Rwanda is challenging the accusations, saying they only attacked members of the Hutu militias responsible for the 1994 genocide. The UN report risks seriously complicating the always-tenuous politics of Central Africa, where Rwanda has become a beacon of stability. Here’s what reporters and Rwanda-watchers have to say about the report.

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More Commentary:

AFP

UN Dispatch

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