KAMPALA, Uganda – The president of Burundi has signed legislation to make Burundi the first country to withdraw from the International Criminal Court.
The presidency said on Twitter on Tuesday that President Pierre Nkurunziza approved the law after it won lawmakers’ support last week.
Burundi’s decision to quit the ICC follows a bitter dispute with the international community over the human rights situation in the East African country. More than a year of deadly violence has followed Nkurunziza’s controversial decision to pursue a third term.
The Hague-based court prosecutes cases of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity. Some African countries have said it unfairly targets the continent.
Observers say a withdrawal from the ICC takes effect a year after the day the U.N. secretary-general is formally notified of a country’s intention.