ICC postpones Kenyan president's trial to February
October 31, 2013 -- Updated 1651 GMT (0051 HKT)
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta's trial was scheduled to begin on November 12.
- Trial of Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta had been scheduled to start on November 12
- Kenyatta charged in International Criminal Court with five counts of crimes against humanity
- Charges accuse him of funding militia that conducted attacks after disputed 2007 election
- Attacks happened six years before Kenyatta was elected to presidency
(CNN) -- The International Criminal Court on Thursday postponed the beginning of Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta's trial on charges of crimes against humanity by three months to February 5, accepting a defense request for more preparation time.
The trial at the Netherlands-based ICC had been scheduled to begin on November 12. The prosecution agreed that certain issues raised by the defense merited further investigation, the court said.
Kenyatta was charged last year with five counts of crimes against humanity, stemming from violence that plagued a disputed 2007 Kenyan presidential election, in which then-incumbent President Mwai Kibaki was declared the winner.
More than 1,000 people died and hundreds of thousands were displaced when ethnic groups loyal to leading candidates in the December 2007 election torched homes and hacked rivals to death. The charges accuse Kenyatta, who backed Kibaki in the election, of funding a local militia that conducted reprisal attacks.
Kibaki continued to serve as President until this year. Kenyatta, the son of Kenya's founding leader, was elected in March and took office in April.
The ICC has also accused Deputy President William Ruto of orchestrating attacks. A third suspect, radio personality Joshua arap Sang, is being tried alongside Ruto on similar charges; the trial of these two began in September.
Kenyatta and Ruto have denied accusations that they coordinated violence among their respective ethnic groups after the disputed election.
African Union accuses ICC of bias, seeks delay of cases against sitting leaders
The court -- set up in 2002 to try claims of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes -- has ordered Kenyatta to attend opening and closing statements, but has excused him from being at the trial otherwise.
The Kenyan parliament voted in September to withdraw from the court's jurisdiction after repeatedly calling on it to drop the cases. But a withdrawal would take a while to implement because it involves steps such as a formal notification to the United Nations, and the ICC said the trials would proceed. Kenyatta has said he and Ruto would cooperate with the court to clear their names.
Kenya's previous administration reneged on a deal to set up a special tribunal to try suspects in the post-election violence, prompting the international court to step in.
Kenya is the second African nation after Sudan to have a sitting president facing charges at the International Criminal Court. Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir has largely shunned an ICC warrant for his arrest for alleged war crimes.
CNNs Pierre Meilhan, Jason Hanna and Faith Karimi contributed to this report.
Today's five most popular stories
Part of complete coverage on
December 24, 2014 -- Updated 0254 GMT (1054 HKT)
A decade on from devastating 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, the Red Cross' Matthias Schmale says that the lessons learned have made us safer.
December 24, 2014 -- Updated 0024 GMT (0824 HKT)
As soon as word broke that "The Interview" will hit some theaters, celebrations erupted across social media -- including from the stars of the film.
December 23, 2014 -- Updated 1844 GMT (0244 HKT)
Did a rogue hacker -- or the U.S. government -- cut the cord for the regime's Internet?
December 24, 2014 -- Updated 0106 GMT (0906 HKT)
Monaco's newborn royals, Princess Gabriella and Crown Prince Jacques Honore Rainier, posed for their first official photos with their parents.
December 23, 2014 -- Updated 1706 GMT (0106 HKT)
What's next for the Internet? Acclaimed scientist Sir Tim Berners-Lee shares his insights.
December 23, 2014 -- Updated 0822 GMT (1622 HKT)
The United States and North Korea have long been locked in a bitter cycle of escalating and deescalating tensions. But the current cyber conflict may be especially hard to predict.
December 22, 2014 -- Updated 2100 GMT (0500 HKT)
A chilling video shows Boko Haram executing dozens of non-Muslims.
December 22, 2014 -- Updated 1134 GMT (1934 HKT)
New planes, new flight tests ... but will we get cheaper airfares?
December 21, 2014 -- Updated 1746 GMT (0146 HKT)
The killing of two cops could not have happened at a worse time for a city embroiled in a public battle over police-community relations, Errol Louis says.
December 22, 2014 -- Updated 0251 GMT (1051 HKT)
The gateway to Japan's capital, Tokyo Station, is celebrating its centennial this month -- and it has never looked better.
December 20, 2014 -- Updated 1621 GMT (0021 HKT)
Unicef has warned that more than 1.7 million children in conflict-torn areas of eastern Ukraine face an "extremely serious" situation.
December 22, 2014 -- Updated 1701 GMT (0101 HKT)
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.