THE HAGUE (Reuters) – The International Criminal Court (ICC) has closed its probe into the 2009 stadium massacre in Guinea, the court prosecutor said on Thursday, a day after a long-awaited trial over the atrocities began in a local court.
“I have concluded that the national authorities of Guinea are neither inactive, unwilling nor unable to genuinely investigate and prosecute the alleged crimes committed at Conakry stadium,” prosecutor Karim Khan said in a statement to explain his decision to end the ICC’s involvement.
The ICC is a court of last resort that can only prosecute genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity if member states are unwilling or unable to do so.
Eleven men, including former military ruler Moussa Dadis Camara, are accused of being responsible for the killings and mass rape by security forces in a stadium in Guinea’s capital of Conakry.
On Sept. 28, 2009, tens of thousands of pro-democracy demonstrators held a protest in the stadium to pressure Camara not to stand for election as president of Guinea the following year. Many were shot, stabbed, beaten or crushed in a stampede as security forces fired teargas and charged the crowded stadium.
A month later the office of the ICC prosecutor said it had opened a preliminary examination into the alleged atrocities in Guinea, a member state.
(Reporting by Stephanie van den Berg; Editing by Richard Chang)