Posts Tagged ‘AU’

From FM News, NAIROBI, Kenya Jan 12 2010- The International Centre for Transitional Justice says it is unlikely that African Union member states will support the call by Kenya to withdraw from the Rome Statute which establishes the International Criminal Court . The Head of the ICTJ Kenya Office Njonjo Mue ruled out a case of a bloc withdrawal by African countries which form the largest members to the court.

“Although the AU has its issues with the refusal of the ICC to defer the Bashir indictment, African states have not individually said they have a problem, so they will withdraw but it is awaited to be seen what the game plan is,” he told Capital News.

This comes in the wake of reports that the Government has sent ministers to lobby different African countries to support its efforts to have the six Kenyans named by the International Criminal Court tried locally. Only this week, Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka met Presidents Jacob Zuma and Yoweri Museveni over the issue and is expected to travel to Malawi with only two weeks left before African Union Heads of State meet in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, for an AU summit.


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12 January 2011 VOA News

The campaign to remove Kenya from the International Criminal Court appears to be gathering steam as the east African nation looks to rally diplomatic support across Africa.
Members of Kenya’s cabinet are currently crossing the continent to gain African Union support for withdrawal from the court, the country’s major news outlets are reporting Wednesday.

Kenya’s Daily Nation newspaper and Capital FM radio station have reported that Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka is in South Africa Wednesday to discuss withdrawal with President Jacob Zuma. The vice president is expected to visit Uganda on Thursday to push for further support from President Yoweri Museveni.

While news of the government-wide push contradicts past statements by Kenyan leaders, the Director for the Nairobi-based International Center for Policy and Conflict, Ndungu Wainaina, doubts whether the current coalition government ever actually supported the court.

“The war against ICC in Kenya is deeper than what it seems on the face,” said Wainaina. “Despite the various public statements by individual members, individual cabinet ministers and the Prime Minister, we have not seen a collective government position since this new war against the ICC began.”

It has been less than a month since International Criminal Court Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo announced six suspects are to face judges in The Hague for their roles in Kenya’s post-election violence three years ago. The list, which confirmed speculation involving prominent politicians, such as Finance Minister Uhuru Kenyatta and presidential hopeful William Ruto, also contained surprises, like civil servant Francis Muthaura and journalist Joshua arap Sang.

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Alfred Wandera, Daily Nation , June 9 2010

President of the Assembly of State Parties to the International Criminal Court has insisted that Uganda must arrest Sudan President Omar al-Bashir should he visit the country during the AU summit due in Kampala in July.

In a statement released yesterday to media at the ongoing ICC Review Conference in Kampala, Mr Christian Wenaweser said since Uganda is a party to the Rome Statute, it has to fulfil its mandate as stipulated in the Statute.

“I’m looking forward to seeing a statement from the Ugandan government that is less equivocal than what we have seen over the past few days. What’s important from our perspective is Uganda is a state party to the Rome Statute so it has an obligation to fully cooperate with the provisions of that statute and we would like to see a statement to that affect,” Mr Wenaweser’s statement reads in part.

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OTJR has recently produced a new debate series on International Justice In Africa: http://www.csls.ox.ac.uk/otjr.php?show=currentDebate10.

Contributions Include:

11. International Criminal Justice and Non-Western Cultures

12 April 2010 by Tim Kelsall

As the ICC Review Conference nears, it is time to consider how best to create a form of international criminal justice that is culturally and socially appropriate in non-Western settings.

10. Peace, Justice, and the International Criminal Court

19 March 2010 by Sara Darehshori and Elizabeth Evenson

This paper argues that justice initiatives, and the ICC’s work in particular, do not seriously impede peace processes. The paper shows instead that remaining firm on justice yields short- and long-term benefits that contribute toward peacebuilding.

9. What the ICC Review Conference Can’t Fix

15 March 2010 by Adam Branch

8. Root and Branch, Tree of Life: Sowing the Seeds of Grassroots Transitional Justice

10 March 2010 by Andrew Iliff

7. The Standoff between ICC and African Leaders Debate Revisited

10 March 2010 by Emmanuel Saffa Abdulai

6. The Contribution African States Can Make to the ICC Review Conference

10 March 2010 by Valentina Torricelli

5. Understanding Africa’s Position on the International Criminal Court

10 March 2010 by by Comfort Ero

4. The Limits of Prosecutions

10 March 2010 by Okechukwu Oko

3. Inside the Minds of the ICC Judges: Will They Give Ocampo the Benefit of the Doubt in Kenya?

10 March 2010 by Lionel Nichols

2. A Note on State Policy and Crimes Against Humanity

10 March 2010 by Larry May

1. International Justice in Africa – Debate Summary

10 March 2010 by Lydiah Kemunto-Bosire

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Jurist, Andrea Bottorff, Feb 9 2010

The African Union (AU) [official website] on Monday called for a hybrid court of Sudanese and foreign judges to hear trials of individuals accused of war crimes in Darfur[JURIST news archive]. The AU Implementation Panel, led by former South African president Thabo Mbeki [ANC profile], renewed its request for the combined court a week after the International Criminal Court (ICC) [official website] issued a ruling to reconsider genocide charges against Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir [JURIST news archive]. The AU had issued a statement condemning the ICC decision and stressing the need for African participation [press release] in seeking justice in Sudan:

The African Union is confident that, with genuine support from the international community, the Sudanese people have the capacity to triumph over their long-standing divisions and accelerate the process of the pursuit of democracy and development. On its part the AU, which was the first to take the initiative and assume responsibility for peace and protection in Darfur, will remain actively engaged, as the crisis in Sudan is also Africa’s crisis; indeed, it profoundly affects the continent’s largest country at a critical moment in its national history, as well as its many neighbours and the continent as a whole. The African Union is convinced that the achievement of lasting peace, justice and reconciliation in Sudan requires Sudanese ownership and Africa’s leadership, with the full support of the international community.

Mbeki suggested that the hybrid court would help maintain Sudanese confidence [News24 report] in achieving justice for the people of Darfur.

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Bloomberg  Jason McLure, Feb 5 2010

The African Union said a decision by the International Criminal Court to review a decision not to charge Sudanese President Umar al-Bashir with genocide in the western region of Darfur may undermine peace in the country.

“The AU reiterates that the search for justice should be pursued in a manner not detrimental to the search for peace,” the 53-member nation group said in an e-mailed statement today. “The latest decision by the ICC runs in the opposite direction.”

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AFP Emmanuel GOUJON Feb 5 2010

ADDIS ABABA — The African Union on Friday said the International Criminal Court’s decision to consider adding genocide charges to an arrest warrant for President Omar el-Beshir harms Sudan’s peace process.

“The AU reiterates that the search for justice should be pursued in a manner not detrimental to the search for peace. The latest decision by the ICC runs in the opposite direction,” the pan-African body said in a statement.

An appeals chamber of the International Criminal Court (ICC) on Wednesday ordered a review of Beshir’s arrest warrant for alleged atrocities in the western Sudanese province of Darfur.

It directed judges to reconsider their decision omitting genocide from the warrant issued in March last year, saying they had made “an error in law”.

The African Union said the ICC’s decision comes at a sensitive time for Sudan — with elections due to be held in April and a referendum on self-determination for Southern Sudan set for January 2011.

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By Barry Malone, Reuters, Saturday, May 2, 2009

ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) – An African Union (AU) panel plans to meet the International Criminal Court (ICC) despite AU opposition to a warrant of arrest for Sudan’s president, former South African President Thabo Mbeki said on Saturday.

“We are in contact with the prosecutor and have agreed that we would find an occasion as soon as possible for us to sit and meet with him face to face,” Mbeki said in Ethiopia.

He said he could not yet say what the panel would recommend to the ICC, but that they would also discuss issues of “justice.”

The ICC has issued an arrest warrant for President Omar el Bashir to face charges of alleged war crimes carried out during almost six years of fighting in Sudan’s violent west, but he has refused to deal with the court.

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