, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 6 – Victims of the post election violence now have until next Wednesday to make representations to the International Criminal Court (ICC) pre-trial chamber through the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights (KNCHR).
The Commission’s Vice Chairman Hassan Omar Hassan said the victims can make submissions physically or send emails to firstname.lastname@example.org or directly to The Hague via email@example.com.
The move follows a petition by some of the victims who felt locked out when the deadline expired last month.
“Following our discussions with the ICC, I wish to advise that notwithstanding the lapse of deadline for victims to make representations to the Pre-Trial Chamber pursuant to article 15 of the Rome Statutes, the victims may still make such representations,” he said.
“Victims wishing to make such representations to the Pre-Trial Chamber must therefore, do so in the next couple of days,” he said and added that “these representations are not evidentiary, but intended to give a victims perspective with respect to the request by the Prosecutor to initiate investigations in Kenya.”
He said victims were also allowed to submit memoranda, affidavits or use other effective means to make representations to the Pre-Trial Chamber.
In this case, he said, community or village elders and leaders can make representations on behalf of the victims. Mr Hassan said the commission would forward the representations to the ICC’s Victims Participation and Reparations Section.
He said the commission was also concerned about threats and intimidation some of the victims had reported, including some of those who have previously testified in a commission of inquiry.
“The Pre-Trial Chamber must take note that there are increasing instances of threats and intimidation of witnesses,” he said and added: “The commencement of investigations by the Prosecutor will serve as an avenue to provide for witness protection through the ICC.”