ICC urges Kenya to arrest al-Bashir

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[JURIST] The International Criminal Court (ICC) [official website] requested [text, PDF] Monday that Kenya arrest Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir [case materials; JURIST news archive] when he visits the country later this week. Al-Bashir faces seven counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity as well as three charges of genocide [JURIST reports] in relation to the Darfur conflict [BBC backgrounder]. The ICC’s Pre-Trial Chamber I has requested:

the Republic of Kenya to inform the Chamber, no later than 29 October 2010, about any problem which would impede or prevent the arrest and surrender of Omar Al Bashir in case he visits the Republic of Kenya on 30 October 2010; and the Republic of Kenya to take any necessary measure to ensure that Omar Al Bashir, in the event that he visits the country, be arrested and surrendered to the Court in accordance with its obligations under the Statute.

The chamber’s decision comes after notification that al-Bashir might be in Kenya later this week for an Intergovernmental Authority for Development (IGAD) [official website] summit [press release]. The ICC’s instruction to Kenya is for al-Bashir to be arrested and surrendered to the court in fulfillment of its obligations under the Rome Statute [text, PDF].

Al-Bashir last visited Kenya in August for the signing of the country’s new constitution [JURIST report]. Following his visit, the ICC reported Kenya [decision, PDF; JURIST report] to the UN Security Council and the Assembly of States Parties to the Rome Statute for the violation in not arresting al-Bashir. Also following his August visit, former UN secretary-general Kofi Annan urged Kenya to reaffirm its cooperation with the ICC by arresting al-Bashir [JURIST report]. In July, the ICC called for al-Bashir’s arrest [JURIST report] during his visit to Chad, marking the first visit to an ICC member state since the warrants were issued. The ICC also reported Chad [decision, PDF] to the Security Council and Assembly of States Parties. The warrants against al-Bashir have been controversial, with Egypt, Sudan, the African Union and others calling for the proceedings to be delayed, and African Union leaders agreeing not to cooperate [JURIST reports] with the warrant.

Read more detail on JURIST – Paper Chase

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