ICC-bound Kenyatta Skips UN General Assembly

For the first time since independence, Kenya will not be represented by the Head of State in the coming United Nations general assembly in New York from 23rd to 27th September.

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta  says he cannot be out of the country while his deputy is still at The Hague answering to international crimes charges before the International Criminal Court (ICC).
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta says he cannot be out of the country while his deputy is still at The Hague answering to international crimes charges before the International Criminal Court (ICC).

This is after Kenya’s permanent representative to UN Macharia Kamau delivered President Uhuru Kenyatta’s letter to UN secretary-general Ban Ki-Moon informing him of his decision to skip the UN meeting.

The East African nation’s president says he cannot be out of the country while his deputy is still at The Hague answering to international crimes charges before the International Criminal Court (ICC).

President Kenyatta has further summoned Kamau back to Nairobi for consultations over the move that is bound to put Kenya on the international spotlight yet again.

President Kenyatta says he has opted to skip the 68th UN general assembly meeting in New York next week attended by Heads of State from UN member countries but says he will send a delegation to represent him at the meeting.

In a statement to media houses, Statehouse spokesman Mahnoah Esipisu said Kenyan representative to the UN Macharia Kamau has already delivered the president’s message to UN boss Ban-Ki-Moon.

In the statement, President Kenyatta intimated that Kenya has continued to cooperate with the ICC and expected the Hague based court to also reciprocate cooperation with him and his deputy William Ruto as they answer to the international crimes charges.

This comes after ICC rejected a bid by the Africa Union (AU) to have the two Kenyan cases brought back to Kenya or have Kenyatta and Ruto not attend all hearings saying the AU letter was not filed properly.

Similarly, AU will on October 13th hold a special meeting in Ethiopia to chat the way forward in dealing with ICC as they consider mass withdrawal from the Rome statute.

However, Nairobi lawyer Harun Ndubi says the push by AU is a plan by the body to intimidate the international court.

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