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A Meeting Of War-Criminals? Israel’s Netanyahu Set For Kenya Visit On Uhuru Invitation

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Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday announced his intention to travel to Africa this summer, in what would mark the first visit by an Israeli leader to the continent in 50 years.

“I received an invitation from the president of Kenya to visit Africa and I intend to do so around the 40th anniversary of the raid on Entebbe. It was a dramatic national event with great personal consequence for me,” he said at the launch of a new Knesset caucus to promote Israel-Africa ties,” The Times of Israel was quoted as saying.

Worth noting is that Benjamin Netanyahu and seven other former and current government officials may be at risk of arrest over the 2010 Mavi Marmara flotilla raid if they step foot on Spanish soil after a judge, drew up arrest warrants for Israeli officials including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

In the 2010 incident, a group of human rights activists and a smaller group of activists boarded several ships to try to break an Israeli blockade of the Gaza Strip. Israel commandeered and stopped most of the ships without incident, but when Israel Navy commandos boarded the Mavi Marmara they were attacked by activists who wounded some commandos. The incident left 10 activists dead.

International Criminal Court Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda opened a probe into Netanyahu’s actions, but closed it due to what was termed as “pressure” by world powers.

Operation Entebbe was a daring operation to liberate Israeli hostages in Uganda on July 4, 1976. Netanyahu’s brother Yonatan, who led the Israeli commandos, was killed in action. The Operation was sanctioned by President Uhuru Kenyatta’s father, who was the then Kenyan President. Netanyahu met with Uhuru in Jerusalem last Tuesday. The two leaders signed a joint statement focusing on water and agricultural issues, promoting cooperation and establishing a joint bilateral committee.

As that was happening, the Palestinian Liberation Organisation protested at Uhuru’s trip to Israel, calling it a slap-on-the-face of Kenya’s previous stand in regards to Palestine statehood, and called on Arab League members to censure Kenya and the African Union (AU), threatening donor funding from the wealthy bloc of Arab nations.

“Such behaviours boost the Israeli occupation and create a position of collusion between Kenya and the Israeli occupation,” senior PLO official Hanan Ashrawi said in a statement the organisation issued on Thursday.

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The African Union should declare its opposition to such dealings with Israel, Mt Ashrawi added, according to report on Saturday by the Palestine News Network. The PLO official urged the Arab League and the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation to take the same action in response to President Kenyatta’s trip to Israel, the first by a Kenyan head of state in 22 years.

Mr Kenyatta did go to an Israeli settlement in the occupied West Bank where he met with Kenyan students, and made the controversial statement with regards to corruption being deep-rooted in the nation’s culture. “No one has the right to visit in these territories without an advance coordination with the Palestinian leadership,” PLO Secretary General Dr Saeb Erekat declared.

Dr Erekat added that President Kenyatta’s three-day visit “breached Kenya’s obligations not to recognise as lawful a situation created through the illegal use of force and other violations of peremptory norms under international law.” Kenya voted in the United Nations General Assembly in 2012 for a resolution that gave Palestine the status of a non-member state of the UN, but there seems to be a systematic attempt at undermining all gains made by the Kibaki Government since Uhuru took over.

While extending the invitation to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, President Uhuru Kenyatta may have been ignorant to and party to inferior advise dispensed by his mediocre legal team consisting of legal lightweight Njee Muturi who has never been in any meaningful law practice, and is now at the heart of the biggest legal blunders since the enactment of the new constitution in 2010. It may have slipped Uhuru’s mind that Netanyahu has a pending arrest-warrant from Spain, as he prefers to get advise only from his schoolmates. Proper research prior to the invite should have been done. It was during Uhuru’s trip to Israel that he backtracked on forming the Judge Philip Tonui Tribunal, another hallmark in the never-ending Jubilee comedy of errors.

The visit by Benjamin Netanyahu is set to put Kenya at cross-paths with Spain and the larger European Union considering that Kenya has an existing extradition agreement with Spain. Kenya would ordinarily be compelled to hand over Benjamin Netanyahu if he stepped foot in the country, and with the likelihood of that not happening, Uhuru will leave office in 2017 having violated not only our constitution, but our international obligations based on the following Act No: CAP. 76 Act Title: EXTRADITION (CONTIGUOUS AND FOREIGN COUNTRIES) ACT. Article VI.

Additional Reporting; Times of Israel, Daily Nation, The Independent & KenyaLaw.Org


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