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Verdict in Dominic Ongwen Case Set for February 4

(The Hague) – The International Criminal Court’s trial of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) leader Dominic Ongwen, in which a verdict is due on February 4, 2021, has been a significant step toward justice for atrocities committed by the group in…
Dominic Ongwen, a Ugandan commander in the Lord’s Resistance Army, waits for the judge to arrive as he made his first appearance at the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands, Monday, Jan. 26, 2015.
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Who is Dominic Ongwen? What is the Lord’s Resistance Army? How did the ICC come to bring charges against Ongwen? What are the charges against Ongwen? How does Ongwen’s experience as a child soldier affect judicial proceedings against…
Dominic Ongwen, a Ugandan commander in the Lord’s Resistance Army, waits for the judge to arrive as he made his first appearance at the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands, Monday, Jan. 26, 2015.
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Persistence Over Many Years Helps Bring Bosco Ntaganda to Justice

How long had you been investigating Ntaganda’s abuses? I started documenting his abuses when I first moved to Goma in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo in 2008. Bosco Ntaganda was a member of the Rwandan-backed CNDP (Congrès national pour la…
Bosco Ntaganda sits in the courtroom of the International Criminal Court
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Sylvestre Mudacumura’s Forces’ Victims Entitled to Justice, Redress

(Goma) – The death in the Democratic Republic of Congo of a rebel leader wanted by the International Criminal Court highlights the need to bring justice for his forces’ many victims. The Congolese army announced on September 18, 2019 that its forces…
Sylvestre Mudacumura.
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Bosco Ntaganda Case Spotlights Need for Justice in DR Congo

(The Hague) – The International Criminal Court’s (ICC) conviction of the Congolese rebel leader Bosco Ntaganda sends a strong message that justice may await those responsible for grave crimes in the Democratic…
Bosco Ntaganda sits in the courtroom of the International Criminal Court
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The International Criminal Court’s (ICC) conviction of the Congolese rebel leader Bosco Ntaganda sends a strong message that justice may await those responsible for grave crimes in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Human Rights Watch said today. 
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International Criminal Court Acquits Jean-Pierre Bemba

The International Criminal Court (ICC) appeals chamber last Friday overturned the conviction against Jean-Pierre Bemba, former vice-president of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Bemba was the court’s sole prosecution from its…
Former Congo vice-president Jean-Pierre Bemba looks up when sitting in the courtroom of the International Criminal Court to stand trial in The Hague, Netherlands, September 29, 2015.
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First Lady’s Acquittal Highlights ICC Process As Critical Path for Victims

(Nairobi) – The acquittal in Côte d’Ivoire of former Ivorian first lady Simone Gbagbo for crimes against humanity based on a process marred by fair trial concerns and a critical lack of evidence shows the importance of the International Criminal Court’s…
Ivory Coast's former first lady Simone Gbagbo at the Palace of Justice in Abidjan on December 26, 2014.
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Opposition to Withdrawal by States

The African Union made headlines Tuesday for purportedly agreeing to mass withdrawal from the International Criminal Court. The reality is more complex. The decision by AU member states welcomes the announced withdrawals by South Africa,…
A general view shows the headquarters of the African Union (AU) building in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, January 29, 2017.
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Thousands of Victims Participating in Case

(Brussels) – The opening of the International Criminal Court trial of a Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) commander is an important new chapter in holding the rebel group accountable for its brutal crimes in northern Uganda, Human Rights Watch said today.…
Ongwen at the ICC, January 21, 2016
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Countries Commit to Working Within the ICC System

A slew of African countries reaffirmed their backing for the International Criminal Court (ICC) during the past two days, giving much-needed support to the court in the wake of recently announced withdrawals by South Africa, Burundi, and Gambia.  …
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Latest Move Shows Government’s Disregard for Victims

(Nairobi) – Burundi has taken a major step backward by officially withdrawing from the International Criminal Court, Human Rights Watch said today. Other African ICC members should distance themselves from Burundi’s withdrawal and affirm their support for…
Residents outside their houses in Nyakabiga, in the Burundian capital Bujumbura, look at the body of a man shot dead on December 11, 2015.
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Pushback Against AU Call for Withdrawal

The 27th African Union (AU) summit closed Monday evening without an AU call for immediate mass withdrawal from the International Criminal Court in the face of strong pushback from Nigeria, Senegal, Ivory Coast, Tunisia, and even ICC non-member Algeria,…
A general view shows delegates during the 26th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union (AU) at the AU headquarters in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, January 31, 2016.
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July 17, the Day of International Criminal Justice, is the anniversary of the Rome Statute, which paved the way for the creation of the International Criminal Court (ICC). Anniversaries are often cause for celebration, but the ICC—the world’s…
The International Criminal Court premises in The Hague. © 2016 Human Rights Watch
Report
Summary “We want to end impunity in Ivory Coast. No one is above the law. All those that committed blood crimes will be punished ... There will be no exceptions.” —Ivorian President Alassane Ouattara, Dakar, May…
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Hold Fair Trials for 2010-2011 Post-Election Abuses

(Abidjan) – Côte d’Ivoire has not yet delivered justice for victims of grave crimes by both sides in the country’s 2010-2011 post-election crisis, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. President Alassane Ouattara and his new justice minister…
Victims of the 2010-2011 post-election crisis hold placards reading 'We claim justice, justice justice' at a gathering in the Kouassai district of Abidjan on February 28, 2013,
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As the African Union summit closed on January 31, 2016, Kenyan media ignited with reports that the African Union endorsed mass withdrawal of African countries from the International Criminal Court. But the reality is a lot less newsworthy than the main…
A general view shows delegates during the 26th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union (AU) at the AU headquarters in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, January 31, 2016.
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Just five short years ago, it seemed impossible to think that one day the former Ivorian president Laurent Gbagbo would be sitting in the dock of the International Criminal Court (ICC). Yet here he was today, listening patiently as a…
Former Ivory Coast President Laurent Gbagbo awaits the start of his trial at the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands, January 28, 2016.
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Concrete Action Needed Against Pro-Ouattara Forces

(The Hague) – The International Criminal Court trial of former Ivorian President Laurent Gbagbo and his former youth minister, Charles Blé Goudé, which begins on January 28, 2016, shows that justice can reach those who once appeared untouchable, Human…