UN: ICC warns against violence during elections in Central African Republic

New York, US (PANA) - The Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), Ms. Fatou
Bensouda, on Wednesday warned that the ICC will take appropriate action against those
inciting violence during the general elections in the Central African Republic (CAR), saying: "We will record any instance of violence or incitement to violence."

PANA reports that on Sunday, 27 December, elections will be held in CAR to elect the country's President and members of the National Assembly.

An ICC statement sent to PANA in New York, quoted Ms. Bensouda as stating: "In accordance with my Office’s jurisdiction under the Rome Statute, I have been closely following developments in CAR."
"While the recent Constitutional referendum benefited from strong participation despite a volatile security situation, I observed with concern reported incidents of violence and threats in an effort to intimidate and obstruct people from voting.

"Such violence may lead to crimes falling under the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court (ICC), and must stop," she warned.

She recalled that "in September 2014, following a referral by the CAR authorities, I announced my Office’s second investigation into crimes committed in the country. This investigation is ongoing; my Office continues to collect evidence, with a view to requesting warrants of arrest as soon as possible against those responsible for grave crimes committed since 1 August 2012, with no end date."

"The process of gathering evidence against any person who incites or engages in acts of mass violence before, during and after the elections is continuing, and such acts are serious crimes, which the ICC has jurisdiction to deal with," the ICC prosecutor noted.

"I want to be clear: my Office will continue to closely follow developments in CAR in the coming period and record any instance of violence or incitement to violence. Those who incite or commit atrocity crimes will be held accountable either by the relevant national authorities in CAR or at the ICC," Ms. Bensouda concluded.
-0- PANA AA/VAO 23Dec2015

23 december 2015 13:33:38

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