NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 1 – The International Criminal Court (ICC) Appeals Chamber has appointed Ghanaian judge Akua Kuenyehia to preside over applications by four Kenyans facing trial at The Hague-based court.
The chamber will hear appeals by Uhuru Kenyatta, Francis Muthaura, William Ruto and Joshua arap Sang who are challenging the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court to try them with charges of crimes against humanity.
The other judges are; ICC President Sang-Hyun Song from South Korea, Ntanda Nsereko from Uganda, Erkki Kourula (Finland) and Anita Usacka (Latvia).
The four Kenyans have appealed directly to the Appeals Chamber on the question of whether the court had jurisdiction to entertain the Kenya cases.
They have also separately filed an application for leave to challenge the Pre-Trial Chamber II’s decision that confirmed charges of crimes against humanity. The application of leave was filed last week before the Pre-Trial Chamber II and law scholars argue that it would be difficult for that court to grant such leave.
The ICC Pre-Trial Chamber II confirmed charges against the four on Monday last week.
Judge Ekaterina Trendafilova announced that the court was satisfied with Prosecutor Louis Moreno Ocampo’s evidence against the four but dropped charges against Tinderet MP Henry Kosgey and former police boss Hussein Ali due to lack of sufficient evidence. Read related story here.
Meanwhile the Pre-Trial Chamber has allowed Ocampo to consolidate his responses to the application by William Ruto and Joshua arap Sang for leave to appeal the court’s decision that confirmed their case for trial.
Trendafilova also allowed the prosecutor to extend pages of his response from the required 20 to 40.
More than 1,300 Kenyans were killed and 500,000 displaced in the 2008 violence that broke after the presidential election results were announced.