ICC Treating Africa Unfairly – AU

Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta (back row) says his case will interfere with his running of the country

The International Criminal Court is treating Africa unfairly, a senior African Union official has said, at the start of a special AU meeting to discuss a possible pull-out.

Ethiopian Foreign Minister Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said the court was targeting Africa and Africans.

Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta (back row) says his case will interfere with his running of the country
Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta (back row) says his case will interfere with his running of the country

The two-day summit comes as Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta is due to face trial at The Hague next month.

He denies charges of organising violence after the 2007 elections. Those leaders seeking to skirt the court are effectively looking for a license to kill, maim and oppress their own people”

On Thursday, Mr Kenyatta again asked for the charges to be dismissed.

He, along with some other African leaders, argue that a serving president should not be made to face trial.

The ICC has rejected a previous request that he be allowed to give evidence by video link.

His deputy, William Ruto, faces similar charges, which he also denies.

His trial was postponed for a week last month to allow him to return home to help deal with the terror attack on the Westgate shopping centre.

Mr Tedros, who is the current chairman of the AU’s Executive Council, said the ICC was “condescending” towards the continent.

“Far from promoting justice and reconciliation… the court has transformed itself into a political instrument targeting Africa and Africans. This unfair and unjust treatment is totally unacceptable,” he said.

He said that the ICC had failed to respond to the African Union’s previous complaints and said the issue should be referred to the UN Security Council.

Kenya’s foreign minister has denied initial reports that it is lobbying for the African Union to call for all member states to withdraw from the ICC.

Analysts say several East African nations favour such a move, while there is less support in West Africa.

Botswana has also publicly supported the court, while South Africa’s governing African National Congress has voiced criticism.

Thirty-four of the AU’s 54 members have signed up to the ICC.

If a large number of the 34 African countries were to pull out, it would be a huge blow to the ICC, which has 122 members.

Kenya’s parliament has already passed a motion for the country to withdraw.

Former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan has said that withdrawing from the court would be a “badge of shame”.

Nobel Peace laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu has also voiced his support for the ICC.

“Those leaders seeking to skirt the court are effectively looking for a license to kill, maim and oppress their own people without consequence. They believe the interests of the people should not stand in the way of their ambitions of wealth and power,” he wrote in an article carried by several newspapers.

“They simply vilify the institution as racist and unjust, as Hermann Goering and his fellow Nazi defendants vilified the Nuremberg tribunals following World War II,” he wrote.

All eight of the cases currently open at the ICC are in Africa but it is also investigating possible cases elsewhere.


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9 thoughts on “ICC Treating Africa Unfairly – AU

  1. Only drunks think that a breathlizer is a pain in the neck. If you are not a dictator , why should the ICC even begin to be “unfair” to you ? If I remember correctly , the first 3 politicians that the ICC convicted were not Africans .

    1. Kyonga, There is a guy who has just gassed 1,400 people dead in an instant, this year alone, and that does not include those he has shot or bombed over three years. Have you Kyonga heard any comment from the ICC about this fellow? If you have, please share. Otherwise stop defending white men. Its time we got our own home-grown solutions to our problems.

  2. I would support the court if Bush and Blair were arraigned to answer for the Irai crimes following the lies about wmd.


    For an overwhelming majority of law abiding Africans, also fully cognisant of their right to free and fair elections, human rights for all and the rights and freedoms that come with true democracy, the ICC is doing a very good job in Africa and has yet to do much more since Africa is still largely undemocratic.

    Africa is still largely ruled by self-imposed dictators of sorts to include military and quasi-military regimes, self imposed leaders who habitually return to power again and again through craftily stolen elections and for who absolute “impunity” is a very powerful tool and weapon of control and most of who have already committed crimes against humanity, whether verifiable or not. I use the reference to “craftily stolen elections” since many African countries still lack those solidly impartial institutions that would ensure elections are not stolen, peoples rights and freedoms are protected and laws fairly enforced. These drawbacks make it very easy to steal elections. African leaders know it and are now running scared to the UN and AU in every attempt to force Africa out of the ICC membership. Their pursuit to sway other African leaders into a joint decision to leave ICC membership is clearly not in the interest of the majority of Africans.

    Absence of ICC oversight serves African leaders very well in upholding absolute impunity into perpetuity for the African leaders since in the absence of democracy this is the only tool that has since independence given most African leaders the freedom to abuse human rights and commit crimes against humanity when they quash and knock-off anyone that will dare challenge their undemocratic ways, stay in power and dictatorial rule.

    Until Africa is ruled by leaders elected through truly “free and fair” elections, the work of the ICC is very vital in the defence of the African people from human rights abuses even though the self-imposed leaders of sorts shun the ICC in fear that it serves as a deterrence to their iron fisted power and impunity.

    Africa is NOT being unfairly treated by the ICC as some African leaders would have you believe. Moreover if any one is suspected of crimes against humanity, it remains a fact that the truth will always set them free when the law finds one innocent, so why the panic by African leaders?

    The citizens of and civil societies of African countries who the ICC serves have not complained against the work of the ICC, so why are the largely self-imposed African leaders complaining? Is it not obvious?

    Hats off for the ICC and please do more for Africa in ensuring everyone suspected of human rights violations and crimes against humanity is investigated and brought before the courts in the Hague. You are doing a good job.

    To those accused of crimes against humanity, remember “the truth will always set you free” Embrace the truth

  4. every african leader who attended the summit looks even more stupid than they already are,at time when africans are resorting to desperate measures to leave the continent and drowning in european union waters due to brutal regimes and poverty, all our african leaders think about is to escape justice!

  5. This is the right time for Presidents Museveni, Kagame, Yahya and Uhuru to lead their countries in this “righteous Rebellion”. Gen. George Washington was labeled a Traitor by the British but now he is the American Hero. Some agreements, charters, treaties and alliances have to be broken for greater good.

  6. Why do you think that Africa is treated unfairly in the ICC court? African leaders have caused many atrocities to their people they claim to lead yet they are ruling them. When you say that they should also look at the non African Countries who have commited the same atrocities it means you have your crimes but you do not want be tried alone. The fact remains that you have cases to answer to the courts of law. Many African leaders are dictators and they do so on judgements in their local courts of law that there is no way such countries can judge them fairly. So l support the ICC court because there must be a court that looks into African matters when it is not an African court.
    Even if you pull out of the court you stay accountable to it because. Lybia was not part of it but it had to come in and save the people of Lybia. So if you want to be treated fairly in the courts of ICC try to avoid it by your actions against the people you lead.

  7. Its unfair, more than 1,200 people died in Kenya, Kenyan Government have not open any single file for the prosecuting the perpetrators. ICC must do what they have failed to do. The people pushing for the withdrawal also have question on there back.

  8. Indeeed Africa is a unique continent….A continent that its so called leaders who are in essence rulers commit human rights abuses and don’t want any body to talk about them, rulers who treat their countries as the basket bread for ONLY their families,rulers who try to equate themselves with the most developed countries’ leaders, rulers who are shameless in telling naked lies in the light….the most depictable rulers are from Africa…of course some..who are very few are indeed leaders..John Koufour, Nelson Mandela, the after Nyaerere Presidents of Tz, Joachim Chissano, Joyce Banda…any other one to add on the list???

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