From the Publisher
In this issue, we cover the relationship between the African Union and the ICC in the wake of the indictments and trials of some African leaders at The Hague by the ICC. While 122 states, including 34 African states are party to the Rome Statute, the main concern is that only African leaders are currently under ICC indictment or on trial at The Hague and this has caused serious tensions between the continental organization and the ICC. On 11 and 12 October 2013, the African Union held an extraordinary meeting at Addis Ababa at which they decided to call for deferment of the trials of African leaders currently underway at the Hague while at the same time, the AU has established a Contact Group of five states to consult with the permanent members of the UN Security Council on the question of deferral of cases before the court. On October 18, the Trial Chamber of the ICC at The Hague, The Netherlands, issued its decision granting President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya, “Conditional Excusal from Continuous Presence at Trial”. It, in effect, rejected the compromise proposed by the summit meeting of African states to defer hearings of the case while President Uhuru remains in office. In the circumstance, hard liners in Africa are right in urging President Kenyatta to ignore the whole process.