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Archive for September 23rd, 2013

Kenya’s Deputy President William Ruto Addresses the Nation after the terrorist attack in Nairobi

Posted by African Press International on September 23, 2013

He told the Kenyan people to be calm and that the country will defeat the evil that has befallen the good patriotic Kenyans.

He spoke to the Kenyan people immediately after his arrival from the Hague.

The court allowed him one week in order to get back to Kenya and assist the President in sorting out the problem affecting the country.

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Norway to take in 1 000 Syrian refugees

Posted by African Press International on September 23, 2013

 

“The Government decided today to accept 1 000 Syrian refugees for resettlement to Norway. The war in Syria has led to an acute refugee situation. Syria’s neighbouring countries have taken in close to two million refugees. The capacity of these countries is at breaking point and the UNHCR has appealed to other countries to help,” said Minister of Foreign Affairs Espen Barth Eide.

There is no immediate solution to the conflict in Syria in sight. So far the conflict has led to massive flows of refugees to Syria’s neighbouring countries. In mid-September some 730 000 Syrian refugees were registered in Lebanon, 520 000 were registered in Jordan, 464 000 in Turkey, 117 000 in Iraq and 117 000 in Egypt. The UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and Syria’s neighbouring countries have appealed to countries outside the region to resettle some of the refugees currently living in Syria’s neighbouring countries as a matter of urgency.

“Syria’s neighbouring countries have displayed an enormous sense of responsibility for the refugees from Syria. One in every four people in Lebanon is now a Syrian refugee. Syria’s neighbouring countries, in particular Lebanon and Jordan, are reaching the limit of what they can cope with. If nothing is done, they may choose to close their borders. It is therefore crucial that Norway and other like-minded countries show solidarity and take in Syrian refugees,” Mr Eide said.

Following calls from UNHCR, Norway has provided substantial aid to help Syrian refugees in Syria’s neighbouring countries. Since the start of the conflict in Syria in 2011, Norway has provided a total of NOK 850 million in humanitarian aid.

The further quota of 1 000 refugees from Syria will come in addition to Norway’s annual UNHCR resettlement quota of approximately 1 200 refugees.

“Norway has a tradition of doing what it can in response to major international refugee crises and of providing a safe haven for refugees. This time is no exception. We know that Norwegian municipalities will make every effort to take in and integrate these refugees. As a country we can be proud of this and we will do everything we can to support the municipalities in this process,” said Minister of Children, Equality and Social Inclusion Inga Marte Thorkildsen.

The additional resettlement quota that the Government has decided to establish is reserved for refugees from Syria who are recognised by UNHCR, preferably those living in Lebanon and Jordan. The total cost of the quota is estimated to be approximately NOK 770 million.

 

 

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/MFA

 

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Norway condemns terrorist attack in Pakistan

Posted by African Press International on September 23, 2013

Norway condemns the appalling terrorist attack on a church in Peshawar, Pakistan, on 22 September. The attack must be investigated and those responsible brought to justice,” said Minister of Foreign Affairs Espen Barth Eide.

The attack on a church in the old part of the provincial capital Peshawar took place just after Mass on Sunday morning. The congregation had gathered outside the church for a free meal when two explosions killed more than 70 people, including many women and children, and injured more than 100. This is the worst attack on Pakistan’s Christian minority for many years.

“Our thoughts are with the victims, their loved ones and the Palestinian people,” said Mr Eide.

The terrorist attack is the latest in a series of tragic attacks on religious communities in Pakistan. These include a number of attacks on the country’s Shia Muslim minority earlier this year. Sunni Muslim extremists are behind them.

“I am very concerned about the growth of terrorist movements in Pakistan.

“These terrorist attacks hit innocent people and are destabilising Pakistan. The authorities must take resolute action,” said Mr Eide.

 

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ICC Ruto and Sang case: Hearing on the adjournment of the trial, 23 September 2013

Posted by African Press International on September 23, 2013

The adjournment was due to the request by the defence in order to allow the accused Deputy President to travel back to Kenya and assist President Uhuru Kenyatta in dealing with the crisis brought about by Al Shabaab terrorists now holding hostages inside Westgate Mall in Nairobi for the third day.

Reports coming out frm the government confirm 62 deaths and 175 injured.

Here below is the ruling by the court;

Situation: The Republic of Kenya

Case: The Prosecutor v. William Samoei Ruto and Joshua Arap Sang

Today, 23 September 2013, Trial Chamber V (a) of the International Criminal Court consisting of judge Chile Eboe – Osuji (presiding judge), Judge Olga Herrera Carbuccia and Judge Robert Fremr held a hearing on the request made by the Defence of Mr Ruto to adjourn the trial and excuse the accused from his presence at trial for a limited period of time.

In light of the circumstances in Kenya and the views heard during the hearing, the Chamber excused Mr Ruto from the proceedings. For the moment the excusal is permitted for one week only, subject to any further requests that Defence counsel may make if need be to extend it.

Trial Chamber V (a) has also decided to temporarily adjourn hearings in the Ruto and Sang trial, not continuing to hear the testimony of 536 in the absence of Mr Ruto.

The Defence for Mr Ruto filed a request to the Appeals Chamber for reconsideration of its decision on suspensive effect regarding the Prosecutor’s appeal of the decision excusing Mr Ruto from continuous presence at trial.

The trial is adjourned pending either the Appeals Chamber’s decision on the Defence’s urgent request or the expiration of the one-week excusal period, whichever comes earlier.

On 18 June 2013, Trial Chamber V(a) had issued a decision excusing Mr Ruto from being continuously physically present at trial, except for specified hearings. However the Prosecutor appealed this decision and the Appeals Chamber gave the Prosecutor’s request suspensive effect until a final decision on this appeal is made. Mr Ruto was requested to be present during all trial hearings pending the final determination on the Prosecutor’s appeal.

End

/ICC

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