ICC accused of ‘exclusively’ targeting Africans

The International Criminal Court (ICC) employs a “double-standard” by “exclusively” targeting African leaders, a top African Union official said on Wednesday.

“We’ve been complaining … about the double standard,” AU commission president Jean Ping said, referring to the court in The Hague, which prosecutes individuals for genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes.

“The African Union is committed to fighting impunity, it’s in our charter,” Ping told reporters during a trip to Washington.

But when it comes to prosecuting suspects for war crimes, human rights violations and other atrocities at the ICC, the “people who are targeted there, all of them, are exclusively Africans,” he said.

The AU official complained that there are currently about 30 Africans facing trial in the international justice system.

“Why these double standards? We are questioning ourselves on that,” Ping said.

Among those facing prosecution in The Hague are six Kenyans suspected of playing a role in violence that claimed some 1 500 lives after the country’s disputed December 2007 presidential polls.

Earlier this month, the Kenyans appeared at a preliminary hearing at the court in the Netherlands, where they faced accusations including murder, deportation, rape, inhumane acts, persecution and torture. They have denied the crimes.

Ping said he was concerned by the timing of the prosecutions, which he insisted should not be given precedence over the need for security and stability in the region.

“In the continent, we have to solve problems concerning peace and security, justice, reconciliation — a certain number of things which we have to deal with,” he said.

“You cannot says that justice is above peace and security, or peace and security is above justice. We have to take all these questions in a holistic manner, otherwise you will create more problems than solving them.”

The ICC, the world’s only independent, permanent tribunal for war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity, can only prosecute if a state is unwilling or unable to do so. — AFP

We make it make sense

If this story helped you navigate your world, subscribe to the M&G today for just R30 for the first three months

Subscribers get access to all our best journalism, subscriber-only newsletters, events and a weekly cryptic crossword.”

Related stories

WELCOME TO YOUR M&G

Already a subscriber? Sign in here

Advertising

Latest stories

Brexit to exit: The rise and fall of Boris Johnson

The outgoing PM rode his luck throughout his career, bouncing back from a succession of setbacks and scandals

How Cuba is eradicating child mortality and diseases of the...

To move from 59 infant deaths out of every 1000 live births in one of the poorest regions of the island to none in the matter of a few decades is an extraordinary feat

How millions of ‘Mavis’ businesses fall through all the relief...

The energy conundrum affects everyone, but the implications for people like Mavis, who are trying to survive the pitfalls of the second economy, rarely get public space

Police handwriting expert finds signature on King Zwelithini’s will was...

The forensic analyst also reported that pages were misaligned and the coat of arms was of a poor quality, as was the paper used
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…
×