The International Criminal Court and Kenya’s Post-election Violence

July 2011

This GGI Analysis Paper provides a preliminary assessment of a case at the International Criminal Court (ICC) against six Kenyans accused of crimes against humanity. The paper suggests that while the ICC process in relation to the country has been both roundly denunciated and applauded, there is some nascent evidence to suggest that it has marked a crucial step in the evolution of the Court as “complementary to national criminal jurisdictions.”1 Furthermore, Kenya’s case is providing an acute test of the Rome Statute’s controversial, yet unquestionably precedent-setting Article 15 provisions that have allowed the Prosecutor to exercise powers of initiating investigations proprio motu, in addition to providing for civil society participation in informing that decision. It will be argued that the Kenyan situation provides a significant milestone and illuminating example of how the Court can influence State Parties on the long road towards justice and good governance.

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