Press Release: 19 September 2014

Kenyatta case: Trial Chamber V(b) vacates trial opening date; convenes status conferences to discuss pending issues


Situation: Republic of Kenya
Case: The Prosecutor v. Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta

Today, 19 September 2014, Trial Chamber V(b) of the International Criminal Court (ICC) vacated the trial commencement date in the case The Prosecutor v. Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta, which had been provisionally scheduled for 7 October 2014. The Chamber also convened two public status conferences for 7 and 8 October 2014 at 10:00 (The Hague local time), to discuss the status of cooperation between the Prosecution and the Kenyan Government and issues raised in the Prosecution's Notice of 5 September 2014, respectively.

A Representative of the Kenyan Government is invited to attend the first status conference and Mr Kenyatta is required to be present at the second status conference. Both hearings will be held in the presence of the Prosecution, the Defence and the Legal Representatives of Victims.

The Chamber vacated the trial date in the Kenyatta case in order to have more time consider the recent requests by the parties and participants to the trial, without prejudice to its ruling regarding those requests. The Chamber's decision was made with due regard to the requirements of article 64(2) of the Rome Statute, which states that the Trial Chamber shall ensure that a trial is fair and expeditious and is conducted with full respect for the rights of the accused and due regard for the protection of victims and witnesses.

On 28 August 2014, Trial Chamber V(b) had ordered the Prosecution to file a notice confirming whether it anticipated being in a position to begin the trial of Mr Kenyatta on 7 October 2014. On 5 September, the Prosecution filed this notice, requesting the Trial Chamber to further adjourn the trial of Mr Kenyatta until the Government of Kenya executes in full the Prosecution's April 2014 Revised Request for records.

On 10 September 2014, the Defence filed a Response to the Prosecution notice and a Request to Terminate the Case against Mr Kenyatta. The Legal Representatives of Victims also filed a Response to the Prosecution notice on the same day.

On 31 March 2014, Trial Chamber V(b) had adjourned the commencement date of the trial in the Kenyatta case to 7 October 2014 to provide the Government of Kenya with a further, time-limited opportunity to provide certain financial and other records relating to Mr Kenyatta, which the Prosecution had previously requested on the basis that the records are relevant to a central allegation to the case.

Background: Mr Kenyatta is charged, as an indirect co-perpetrator, with five counts of crimes against humanity consisting of murder, deportation or forcible transfer, rape, persecution and other inhumane acts allegedly committed during the post-election violence in Kenya in 2007-2008. Charges were confirmed on 23 January 2012, and the case was committed to trial before Trial Chamber V(b).

Further information on this case is available here.

Order vacating trial date of 7 October 2014, convening two status conferences, and addressing other procedural matters

Question and Answers in the case The Prosecutor v. Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta, 19 September 2014: English

For further information, please contact Sonia Robla, Chief of Public Information Section, International Criminal Court, by telephone at: +31 (0)70 515-8089 or 31 (0)6 46448726 or by e-mail at: [email protected].

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