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CJ to lead talks on court to try international crimes

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The forum to be officiated by Chief Justice Willy Mutunga aims at sensitising participants on the findings and recommendations of the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) Report on the establishment of the ICD/FILE

The forum to be officiated by Chief Justice Willy Mutunga aims at sensitising participants on the findings and recommendations of the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) Report on the establishment of the ICD/FILE

NAIROBI, Kenya Feb 4 – The second stakeholders forum on the proposed International Crimes Division (ICD) will be held in Naivasha on Wednesday.

The forum to be officiated by Chief Justice Willy Mutunga aims at sensitising participants on the findings and recommendations of the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) Report on the establishment of the ICD.

“It will also give participants an opportunity to evaluate the details and components integral to the proposed ICD implementation,” a statement from the Judiciary stated.

The meeting will be attended by development partners, civil society and top judiciary officials – including members of a committee headed by Rev Samuel Kobia who are tasked with the mandate of establishing the ICD.

The Director of Public Prosecutions Keriako Tobiko and representatives from the National Police Service will also attend the forum to be held at the Lake Naivasha Sawela Lodge.

The meeting is expected to establish a stakeholder implementation agenda for consideration by the Judicial Service Commission which is steering the ICD implementation and roll out processes.

A statement from the CJ’s office says the meeting is also aimed at “achieving a general outline that leads discussions to a policy framework on responses to the post-election violence of 2007.”

It will also achieve clarity on the state of responses to international and transnational crimes including proposals towards improving such responses, the statement said.

The proposed ICD at the High Court of Kenya is being established under Section 8 (2) of the International Crimes Act (IC Act) No. 16 of 2008.

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It will have the jurisdiction to conduct trials over persons who are responsible for international crimes committed locally or abroad by a Kenyan, or committed in any place against a Kenyan.

Kenya signed the Rome Statute on August 11, 1999 and ratified it on March 15, 2005, becoming the 98th State party. Consequently, Kenya enacted the implementing legislation, the International Crimes Act for Kenya, Act No. 16 of 2008, with a commencement date of January 1, 2009.

The Act domesticated the Rome Statute which defines and incorporates the crimes of genocide, war crimes and crime against humanity into Kenyan law.

The agenda of forming the ICD was set in motion on May 9, 2012 before the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) on the possibility of operationalising Section 8(2) of the Kenyan International Crimes Act (IC Act) No. 16 of 2008.

This consequently led to establishment of a committee to look into modalities of establishing an International Crimes Division of the High Court.

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