Ruto and Sang case: Appeals Chamber confirms Trial Chamber V(a) decision summonsing witnesses to appear
Situation: Republic of Kenya
Case:The Prosecutor v. William Samoei Ruto and Joshua Arap Sang
Today, 9 October 2014, the Appeals Chamber of the International Criminal Court (ICC) dismissed Mr Ruto's and Mr Sang's appeals against Trial Chamber V(a)'s decision of 17 April 2014. With that decision, the Trial Chamber required witnesses to appear before it, sitting in situ or by way of a video-link, and found that Kenya was under an obligation to facilitate the witnesses' appearance, if necessary by way of compulsory measure.
During an open court session, Judge Akua Kuenyehia, Presiding Judge on these appeals, read the summary of the judgment. She explained that, in the view of the Appeals Chamber, article 64(6)(b) of the Rome Statute expressly gives Trial Chambers the power to compel witnesses to appear before it, thereby creating a legal obligation for the individuals concerned. The Appeals Chamber concluded that there was no error in the Trial Chamber's decision and confirmed it on appeal.
Background: On 17 April 2014, Trial Chamber V(a) granted the Prosecutor's request to summon witnesses who were no longer cooperating or no longer willing to testify. The Government of Kenya was requested to assist in serving the summonses to the witnesses. On 5 June 2014, Mr Ruto and Mr Sang's Defence teams appealed the Trial Chamber V(a) decision.
On 17 June 2014, the Appeals Chamber rejected the Defence's request for suspensive effect, meaning that the appeals procedure did not impact the course of the trial hearings at this stage or the testimony of summoned witnesses. This decision was without prejudice to the Appeals Chamber's judgment on the merits of the ongoing appeals.
On 1 September 2014, the first witness summoned to appear attended the hearing before the Trial Chamber V(a), and four of the nine have testified to date.
For more information on this case, click here.
Judgment on the appeals of William Samoei Ruto and Mr Joshua Arap Sang against the decision of Trial Chamber V (A) of 17 April 2014 entitled "Decision on Prosecutor's Application for Witness Summonses and resulting Request for State Party Cooperation"
(Audio: Floor language/English)
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