Ethiopia: African Union against trial of Kenyatta

Oct 12, 2013, 7:17 AM EDT
Some of tens of thousands of supporters listen to Kenya's fourth President Uhuru Kenyatta as he delivers his first presidential speech moments after he was sworn-in April 9, 2013 in Nairobi.
AFP/Getty

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) — The African Union's executive council condemned the International Criminal Court's charges against President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya as "totally unacceptable," Ethiopia's Foreign Ministry spokesman said Saturday.

Kenyatta faces crimes against humanity charges for Kenya's 2007-2008 postelection violence in which more than 1,000 people died.

The African Union council feels the Kenyatta's trial will hinder Kenya's fight against terrorism, said Dina Mufti. The AU's council proposed that Africans should deal with cases of genocide through an AU-backed court, and should not be forced to resort to the ICC in The Hague.

These points will be presented to African heads of state attending a special summit on Saturday to discuss Africa's relationship with the ICC.

Some African leaders have indicated their countries may sever ties with the ICC in solidarity with Kenya. Some African leaders accuse the ICC of disproportionately targeting Africans. The international court has indicted only Africans so far.

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