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International Criminal Court again delays start of trial for Kenyan president

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THE HAGUE, Netherlands — The International Criminal Court again delayed the trial of Kenya's president on Friday, after prosecutors said they did not have a strong enough case to convict him because Kenya was not cooperating in turning over potential evidence.

Following a prosecution request for a delay, the court scrapped the planned Oct. 7 start of Uhuru Kenyatta's trial on charges of involvement in violence that left more than 1,000 people dead after his country's 2007 elections.

Kenyatta is charged as an "indirect co-perpetrator" with crimes including murder, rape and persecution. He insists he is innocent and his lawyers have called repeatedly for the case to be dropped for lack of evidence.

His trial initially was scheduled to start Feb. 5, but was postponed until October while prosecutors attempted to shore up their case.

Prosecutors said earlier this month they again wanted the trial pushed back until Kenyan authorities have fully complied with a request made in April to turn over information that could be used as evidence. That information includes records relating to Kenyatta's finances.

The court scheduled status conferences for Oct. 7 and 8 at its headquarters in The Hague to discuss the case.

Fatou Bensouda, the court's chief prosecutor, said on Sept. 5 that it would be inappropriate to drop all charges against Kenyatta as his government is not fully cooperating with the court, adding that "the accused person in this case is the head of a government that has so far failed fully to comply with its obligations to the court."

The situation highlights one of the international court's key limitations: It has no police force and must rely on help from governments in countries where it is investigating crimes, sometimes allegedly committed by government forces.

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