ICC (International Criminal Court)

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Former Canadian Justice Minister: Venezuela should be referred to the ICC

Irwin Cotler - Canada’s former justice minister
Monday, June 11, 2018 - 11:32

A panel of three independent international experts appointed by the Secretary-General of Organization of American States (OAS) to look into whether crimes against humanity have been committed in Venezuela have recommended that the country be referred to the International Criminal Court (ICC). Justice Hub recently spoke to one of the experts, Irwin Cotler, on what motived their decision.

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Bemba Acquitted of War Crimes at the ICC

Jean-Pierre Bemba
Monday, June 11, 2018 - 09:57

We lay out the reasons why the Appeals Chamber at the International Criminal Court (ICC) has overturned Jean-Pierre Bemba’s conviction for war crimes and crimes against humanity.

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ICJ Media Review: Amnesty International report alleges US bombings in Syria constitute war crimes

Protests in London against bombing campaigns in Syria.
Monday, June 11, 2018 - 07:03

In this week's review, news about Bemba’s acquittal, MICT Prosecutor Serge Brammertz’s address to the UN Security Council, the schedule for Ongwen’s defence case, potential war crimes in Syria, Syrian torture complaint filed under universal jurisdiction, approval for the Central African Republic Special Tribunal and more

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Navi Pillay: North Korea has committed grave crimes against its own people

Navi Pillay - South Africa
Tuesday, June 5, 2018 - 10:11

Navanethem "Navi" Pillay has been a prominent thorn in the side of repressive regimes her entire career. As part of the #MyJustice series, Justice Hub recently spoke with Pillay and sounded her out on her work exposing rights violations in North Korea, her thoughts as the Rome turns 20 and much else:

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Former Nuremberg Prosecutor Ben Ferencz is still fighting to change the world

Ben Ferencz
Monday, June 4, 2018 - 10:25

Former Nuremberg prosecutor Ben Ferencz is the subject of our latest #MyJustice interview. He talks about using the term genocide for the first time in a criminal trial, America’s complex relationship with international law, what he wants young people to learn from him and his views on justice:

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ICJ Media Review: Moinina Fofana, the first person convicted by the Special Court of Sierra Leone, has served out his sentence

Moinina Fofana
Saturday, June 2, 2018 - 07:25

In this week's review, news about amicus submissions on the Rohingya crimes jurisdiction question, submissions invited from Sudan and Bashir in Jordan’s Art 87(7) appeal, the Central African Republic Special Court, first person convicted by the Special Court of Sierra Leone serves out his sentence, the Oneissi witness summary, Ntaganda’s closing brief schedule and more

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ICJ Media Review: Residual Special Court for Sierra Leone approves Charles Taylor’s Request for a new Attorney

Former Liberian President Charles Taylor
Saturday, May 26, 2018 - 14:54

In this week's review, news about Palestine’s ICC referral and reactions, the ICC Appeals Chamber’s decision on amicus requests, Bashir’s travels, scheduling order for Bemba Appeals judgment, Guatemalan convictions for crimes against humanity, report on crimes by the Nigerian military, Charles Taylor’s representation and more

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Dominic Ongwen's former bush wife: "Ongwen will be accepted too"

Florence Ayot Uganda
Friday, May 25, 2018 - 12:20

Dominic Ongwen, the first Ugandan indictee from the rebel group the Lords Resistance Army, is likely to face a long trial at the ICC. But his former bush wife, Florence Ayot (35), still hopes that one day he’ll come back so they can be together and take care of their two children.

Anonymous
Anonymous

that sad

Tuesday, May 29, 2018 - 05:54
Anonymous
AnonymousSaturday, December 30, 2017 - 09:22
Emmanuel Kuza
Emmanuel Kuza

PAYING FOR THE SINS OF HIS STATE AND THE ISSUE OF MENS REA: THE CASE OF DOMINIC ONGWEN AT THE ICC.

The news of the arrest and on-going prosecution of the former Ugandan rebel leader Mr. Dominic Ongwen nicknamed ‘White Ant’ attracted mixed reaction from his fellow countrymen as well as the international community. Opinions are sharply divided as to whether his arrest and prosecution is in the interest of justice. I am of the opinion that the arrest and prosecution of Mr. Dominic Ongwen is simply a case of making an individual pay for the sins of his state and here are my reasons:

Born in 1980, Dominic Ongwen was abducted by the Lord’s Resistance Army in 1990 on his way to school in his village Coorom, Kilak County, Amuru District of Northern Uganda. As at this time, he was only 10 years old. He and other abducted children were given ‘military training’ and made to kill adults and fellow abducted children that refused to yield to the wishes of the rebels. His childhood was cut short. Ever since his arrest, he began to live an abnormal life in the jungle, living the life of a rebel at such a young age. He was taught how to kill and commit series of crimes that the LRA was known for.

By the time he turned 18, he was already a senior military member of the LRA. He rose rapidly in the world of criminality and became a Brigadier in his late 20s. The LRA under the command of the ‘White Ant’ Ongwen committed heinous crimes in October 2003 and June 2004 at Internally Displaced Peoples’ (IDP) Camps which include sexual slavery, rape, recruitment of children under the age of 15 into the group and forced marriage.

In 2005, the ICC opened an investigation and eventually issued arrest warrant for five LRA leaders amonst which is Ongwen and their founder Joseph Kony. Ongwen later surrendered to the US forces after his arrest by Saleka.

At the opening of pre trial hearing, Fatou Bensouda acknowledged that Ongwen was a child at the time that he was abducted but he will be prosecuted for crimes committed by him as an adult while in the LRA. Well, that is as far as the act is concerned. But I am not sure the ICC prosecutor averted her mind to the issue of mens rea as one of the important aspect of criminal liability as contained in Article 30(1) and (2) (a) and (b) of the Rome Statute. Article 31 further gave grounds for exclusion of criminal responsibility which include infirmity of the mind, intoxication, self defence and duress or threat of immediate death or continuing or imminent bodily harm.

If it is conceded that Ongwen was a child at the time he was abducted and conscripted into the LRA wherein he was taught how to kill and commit several other heinous crimes, then it also follows that his mental and bodily growth and development was truncated by the experience ever since the day that he was forcefully abducted and conscripted into the LRA. In agreement with this, Leila Zerrougui (Special Assistant to the UN Secretary General on Children and Armed Conflicts) said that the impact of armed conflicts cannot be captured by any statistical data, among which are loss of parents, disability due to preventable or treatable diseases and long term psychological trauma.

Zerrougui’s opinion is even about children who are caught up by armed conflict. The psychological impact on someone like Ongwen who was not only caught in the conflict, but abducted by rebels, trained (or abused or turned into a demon) and utilized to perpetrate the conflict from the tender age of 10 will be even more pathetic.

It has been said again and again in several for a that Ongwen’s travails is another sad pointer to the failure of government to provide adequate security for her citizens. If it were not so, the abduction of Ongwen would not have been possible. Very sadly, children in conflict zones all over the world have continued to fall victim to this level of abuse. Just like it happened in Uganda’s LRA, so is the situation with ISIL/Daesh in the middle East, Colombia’s FARC, Sri Lanka’s Baby Brigades among many others.

It is high time national governments the world over begin to take security of lives seriously, especially children and other vulnerable members of the society. Negotiations by the UN and other international organizations have yielded commendable fruits as several children have been released from captivity already. More needs to be done in order to discourage further abduction and conscription of children into these criminal gangs. The state failed in her responsibility to protect him, that is why he and other children were abducted.

I expect that Ongwen’s team of lawyers take up this issue of mens rea, especially his psychological health seriously. A person deprived of his teenage cannot appreciate adulthood. Above prosecution, Dominic Ongwen needs rehabilitation.

Saturday, January 7, 2017 - 21:26
Anonymous
Opolot William

Law takes its cause

Tuesday, December 13, 2016 - 22:22
Anonymous
Opolot William

No need, let him be tried and if found guilty the law takes its cause, no. Need law protects adult criminal, he is,not a child again he know and fully liable for his acts

Tuesday, December 13, 2016 - 22:22
Anonymous
Kaggwa Robert j...

They should first ask him y he came out of LRA. I think Dominic was tired ov de bad things happening in de bush n he couldn't influence de whole team tu come back home, there4, he for himself decided to quit not tu be taken to ICC but to get his amnesty cos iv really he knew of being taken to ICC would he have come back

Tuesday, December 13, 2016 - 08:12
Anonymous
Chrispus Angiro

Dominic should be given amnesty, he is a victim of abduction he didn't join voluntarily all he did was under the command of his boss Joseph Kony

Monday, December 12, 2016 - 08:56
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DRC activist: The ICC needs to urgently intervene in the Congo

Paul Nsapu, President of the Congolese NGO League of Electors and Secretary-General of the Africa
Friday, May 25, 2018 - 06:22

The International Criminal Court's list of who's been prosecuted in dominated by people from the Democratic Republic of Congo. But local human rights activists say that's not enough, and are pressurising the court to intervene again. In February, a team from the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) came to the ICC in The Hague. Paul Nsapu, President of the Congolese NGO League of Electors and on of the Secretary-Generals of the FIDH, was at the meeting. In this interview, Nsapu explains what local human rights activists expect from the ICC in response to continued human rights abuses.

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ICJ Media Review: Status conference on ICC jurisdiction over Rohingya crimes set for June 20th

Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh
Saturday, May 19, 2018 - 11:25

In this week's review, news about the Prosecutor request on jurisdiction on Rohingya crimes, the beginning of the Lebanon tribunal defence case, trial modalities in the Stanisic and Simatovic retrial, Bensouda on Gaza killings and more

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