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ICC allows Uhuru Kenyatta to skip trial sessions

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The International Criminal Court has excused President Uhuru Kenyatta from continuously attending his trial proceedings at The Hague.

The conditional ruling, however, requires him to attend some key sessions including the opening and closing sessions and during hearings when victims present their views and concerns in person.

The President will also be required to attend the court session during the delivery of judgment and in any other time as ordered by the Presiding Judge.

The decision to allow President Kenyatta to skip some sessions during the trial set to begin in November 12 was reached at in a majority ruling , with Presiding Judge Kuniko Ozaki dissenting.

Other judges in the case against Kenyatta are Judge Robert Fremr and Judge Chile-Eboe Osuji.

The majority ruling directed that violations of any conditions in granting the excusal would result in the revocation of the request, and/or the issuance of an arrest warrant.

The assenting judges said the granting of the request was motivated by “the need to ensure the fairness and expeditiousness of the trial in full respect to the rights of Mr Kenyatta as an accused, but also, the need for due regard for the protection of victims and witnesses.”

President Kenyatta faces charges of crimes against humanity arising the post-election violence in Kenya in 2007-2008.

-Nation

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