Burundi quits International Criminal Court
acoording to rapporteu report from AA news, link , Burundi has officially withdrawn from the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC), according to a presidential decree published late Tuesday.
The decree, signed by President Pierre Nkurunziza, came after the country's lawmakers approved a bill on the withdrawal last week.
In July, some African leaders had asked African Union members to withdraw from the ICC claiming, the court’s prosecutors were mainly targeting African leaders.
Unrest in Burundi crisis started in April 2015 when Nkurunziza announced his candidacy for a controversial third term.
Since then, more than 400 people have been killed and tens of thousands have fled the country to seek refuge in neighboring states within the East African region, mostly in Rwanda.
Opposition parties and civil society members have criticized the country’s withdrawal from the ICC. They say the decision reflects the alleged involvement of Bujumbura in crimes against humanity and violations of human rights.
Burundi suspended cooperation with the UN’s human rights arm last week, accusing it of creating “false controversy” with claims of violence against political dissidents.
The state described UN investigators as “persona non grata” and said it would “suspend all cooperation and collaboration in all its structures with this office until a new order."
Jeremiah Minani, a spokesman of the opposition alliance CNARED, told Anadolu Agency the decision to quit the ICC was “proof” that Bujumbura had chosen a dead end.
"The withdrawal does not entitle the regime to continue to massacre without worrying about international justice, this withdrawal is a non-event," Minani said.
Gaston Sindimwo, first vice-president, said after a Cabinet meeting held earlier this month, "Burundi is the victim of an international conspiracy backed by the complicity of certain powers for the sole purpose of destroying the country, we’ll leave the ICC and bear all the consequences."
Aimee Laurentine Kanyana, Burundian minister of justice, told MPs last week,"Burundi found that the ICC is an instrument of pressure and destabilization in developing countries... It is an open secret that investigations against some leaders is initiated under the influence of Western powers."