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ICC vows poll riots trial

Posted by Administrator on September 30, 2009

Raila Odinga supporter during riots in early 2008  

Suspected perpetrators of weeks of violence following polls in Kenya in 2007 will be tried at the International Criminal Court (ICC), the court says.

The ICC announced the move after Kenya’s government missed the deadline to set up a local tribunal.

Head prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo promised that Kenya would be a “world example” on how to manage violence.

More than 1,300 people died in the worst rioting in decades following the December 2007 presidential election.

Hundreds of thousands were forced to flee their homes over weeks of unrest.

‘Three-pronged’ approach

International mediators led by former UN chief Kofi Annan were brought in to resolve the crisis – and brokered a power-sharing government.

But repeated attempts by mediators to coax the government into setting up a tribunal have came to nothing.

In July Mr Annan handed to the ICC a list of those suspected of orchestrating the violence.

The names on the list have not been made public, but correspondents say they are likely to be prominent politicians and businessmen.

The BBC’s Will Ross, in Nairobi, says some politicians have been widely accused of doing everything possible to evade justice.

But he says the ICC’s statement indicates that is no longer an option.

In an ICC statement, Mr Moreno Ocampo said he supported a “three-pronged” solution to the problem.

He said he would prosecute those who bear the most responsibility for the post-election violence. Other perpetrators would be tried in Kenya, and local officials should also set up a truth commission to examine other events connected to the violence.

“Decisive consultations between the prosecutor [Moreno Ocampo] and the Kenyan principals will take place in the coming weeks. Justice will not be delayed,” said the ICC statement.

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

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