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OTP Briefing 12-31 March 2013

OTP Briefing 12-31 March 2013

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Published by: impunitywatch on May 01, 2013
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OTP Briefing
Issue #1381231March2013Bosco Ntaganda in the custodyof the ICC
22 MarchBosco Ntagandasurrendered himself voluntarilyat the US Embassy inKigali,and is now in the ICC’s custody.Upon arrival, Mr Ntaganda received amedical visit and appeared on 26 March before the Judges in the presence of aDefence Lawyer. During this hearing,the Judges of Pre-Trial Chamber II verified theidentity of the suspect and the language in which he is able to follow the proceedings.Mr.Ntaganda was informed of the charges against him and thePre-Trial Chamber IIset the date of the beginning of the confirmation of charges hearing for 23 September2013.This is the first time that a suspect has surrendered himself voluntarily to be in the ICC’s custody.ICC Prosecutor FatouBensouda welcomed news of the transfer of Bosco Ntaganda to the ICC.
"This is a good day for victims in the DRC and forinternational justice.Today those who are alleged tohave long suffered at the hands of Bosco Ntaganda can look forward to the future andthe prospect of justice taking its course"
 , the Prosecutor said.The Prosecutor thanked all States, international and other regional actors who have been working for so long to make this daypossible and particularly acknowledged the support of the authorities of the United States of America, Rwanda and theNetherlands in facilitating today’s transfer and the continued cooperation of the DRC.However, she stresses that
"As we welcome progress in one case, others also subject to ICC warrants in the region remain at large"
 , andurges all States now to renew and refocus their efforts to secure the arrestsof FDLR commander Sylvestre Mudacumura, thetopcommanders of the Lord's Resistance Army who reportedly continue to commit grave crimes in the DRC and beyond, andall others subject to ICC warrants who are still at large.AlsoUN Secretary-GeneralBan Ki-moon madeastatementwelcoming this development.
The International Criminal Court hastoday confirmedthe transfer to its custody ofBosco Ntaganda who is expected to face charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity for atrocities committed in the Ituri region.”
Heaffirms that,
in accordance withthe Relationship Agreement between the twoinstitutions, the United Nations will cooperate with the International Criminal Court with a view to ensuring that Mr. Ntganda receives a fair and expeditious trial.”
Additionally, the members of the Security Councilwelcomedthe surrender of Bosco Ntaganda to the ICC, and paid tribute toall victims of serious crimes of international concern in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).They expressed theirappreciation to the governments of Rwanda, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America, as wellas to the ICC, for facilitating the surrender of Mr. Ntaganda to the ICC, and emphasized that their cooperation wasessential inorder to bring Mr. Ntaganda to justice. The members of the Security Council view Mr. Ntaganda's surrender to the ICC as a
positive step for international criminal justice aswell as toward the restoration of peace and security in eastern DRC., however,they remain deeply concerned about abuses and violations of human rights and violations of international humanitarian lawin the DRC, and recall that those responsible for war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide, as well as for violenceagainst children and acts of sexual and gender-based violence, must be held accountable.Moreover, the members remaindeeply disturbed by the worsening security and humanitarian situation in eastern DRC and reiterate their demand that theMouvement du 23mars (M23), the FDLR, and all other armed groups cease immediately all forms of violence anddestabilizing activities, permanently disband, and lay down their arms.EU High RepresentativeCatherine Ashtonalsowelcomedthe transfer of Mr Bosco Ntaganda,and thankedall those who madethis possible. According to Lady Ashton, this transfer is consistent with the commitments taken in the peace,security anddevelopment framework for the DRC and the region, which the EU supports. Mr Ntaganda’s transfer to the ICC in preparationfor a fair and credible trial at the Court sends a strong message to others accused of atrocities that they too will face justice oneday.
Judges issue a decision on the non-compliance ofChad regarding the arrestofPresidentOmar Al-Bashir
26 MarchPre-TrialChamberIIrendereda decision on the non-compliance of Chad with the Court’s cooperation requests.The Chambernotedthat Chad, asa StateParty,is under theobligation, in accordance with articles 86 and 89 of the Statute, toexecute thepending decisions and orders of the Court concerning the arrest and surrender ofOmar Al-Bashir.However,according to the Registry’s and the Prosecutor’s reportsthe Government of Chad continues towelcome the visits of Omar Al-Bashir on its territory without any attempt toarrest him, despite several warnings on the part of the Court. The Government ofChad has also, contrary to article 97 of the Statute, avoided consultations withthe Court prior to said visits in order to resolveany problems concerning theexecution of the pending cooperation requests.The Chamber thusfoundthatChad:(a) has failed to comply with its obligations toconsult with the Chamber on theproblem(s) which have impeded the execution of the requests for arrest andsurrender of Omar Al-Bashir during his visit; and(b) has failed to cooperate withtheCourt by deliberately refusing to arrest and surrender Omar Al-Bashir, thuspreventing theCourt from exercising its functions and powers under the Statute;(c)the Chamber thusreferreditsdecision to the President ofthe Court fortransmission to the Security Council, through theUNSecretary General, and to the ASP.
I.Preliminary Examinations
Preliminary examinations refer to the analytical process by which the OTP assesses whether there is a reasonable basis to proceed with aninvestigation in a given situation.In accordance with Article 15 of the Statute, the OTP proactively gathers and evaluates information from multiple sources, including“communications” from individuals and parties concerned (phase 1
initial review
). Following a sequential process, and irrespective of the
mechanism by which the jurisdiction of the Court is triggered, the Office then applies the same legal criteria laid out in Article 53 of theStatute, namely
subject-matter jurisdiction
(phase 2),
 , including
complementarity and gravity (phase 3) and the
interests of justice
(phase 4).
OTP Activities
situations under investigation
cases in relation to
 persons Arrest warrants outstanding against
 preliminary examinations in
different continents
cases at Pre-Trial Stage
cases before Trial Chambers2cases before Appeals Chamber
Currently, the OTP is conducting preliminary examinationsinto sevensituations:Afghanistan ,HondurasandKorea(phase 2),Colombia ,
Georgia ,Guinea , andNigeria(phase 3)
25-28 MarchAs part of the preliminary examination of the situation in Georgia, the Office sent a mission to Tbilisi. Followingthe mission, Georgia’s new Minister of Justice and the Chief Prosecutor have publically reiterated Georgia’s readiness toinvestigate crimes committed in relation to the 2008 conflict impartially, stressing their obligation under the Rome Statute toinvestigate and prosecute all crimes falling under the jurisdiction of the ICC. Information collected during the mission willinform the Office’s ongoing admissibility assessment.
II. Investigations and Prosecutions
1. Situation in theDemocratic Republic of the Congo(DRC)Referred: April 2004 Investigation Opened: June 2004
The Prosecutor vThomas Lubanga Dyilo
charged with war crimes of conscripting, enlisting and using children to actively participate in
hostilitiescommittedin the Ituri region 20022003
: Judgment delivered on 14 March 2012; Mr. Lubanga was sentenced on 10 July to a total of 14 years of imprisonment; principles andprocedures to be applied to reparations established on 7 August.This decision is subject to appeal.
The Prosecutor vGermain Katanga
The Prosecutor v Mathieu Ngudjolo Chui
charged with war crimes and crimes against humanity
committedduring the attack of the village of Bogoro in the Ituri region on 24 February 2003
Closing oral statements took place from 15 to23 May 2012; charges severed by Judges on 21 November; on 18 December, NgudjoloChui acquitted of all charges; on 21 December, Ngudjolo Chui was released from custody. The Prosecution has appealed the decision.
The Prosecutor vBosco Ntaganda
charged with war crimesof conscripting, enlisting and using children to activelyparticipate in hostilities
committed in the Ituri region 2002-2003; a second warrant was issued to include war crimes of murder, attacks against the civilianpopulation, rape and sexual slavery, and pillaging, as well as crimes against humanity of murder,rape and sexual slavery, and persecution
: Initial appearance on 26 March 2013; confirmation of charges hearing scheduled for 23 September 2013
Warrant Pending
The Prosecutor vSylvestre Mudacumura
charged with war crimes of attacking civilians, murder, mutilation, cruel treatment, rape, torture,
destruction of property, pillaging and outrages against personal dignity committed in North and South Kivu Provinces of the DRC between20 January 2009 and end of September 2010
13 July 2012
28 MarchThe UNSecurity Counciladoptedresolution 2098 (2013) extending the Mandate of MONUSCO in DRC until 31March 2014. This resolution also contains important ICC references:paragraph20welcomes
the commitment made by theGovernment of the DRC to hold accountablethose responsible for atrocities in the country, noting the cooperation of the Government of theDRC with the International Criminal Court (ICC)”
 ,and stresses
“the importance of actively seeking to hold accountable those responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity in the country and of regional and international cooperation to this end.
Paragraph 21welcomes
the surrender of Bosco Ntaganda to the ICC on 22 March 2013 as a positive step for international criminal justice as well astowards therestoration of peace and security in eastern DRC and expressing its appreciation to all Governments concerned as well as to theICC for their cooperation, which was essential tobring Bosco Ntaganda to justice.”
Finally, paragraph12(d)demands “
support andwork with the Government of the DRC to arrest and bring to justice those responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity in thecountry, including throughcooperation with States of the region and the ICC.
27 March-The Appeals Chamber dismissedby majoritythe appeal raised by the Defence of Germain Katanga against thedecision of Trial Chamber II giving notice of a possible change in the legal characterization of the form of responsibility withwhich Mr. Katanga is charged.The Appeals Chamber considers that the timingand thescope of the Trial Chamber II decisionare in conformity with regulation 55 (2) of the Regulations of the Court. The Appeals Chamber also finds that the TrialChamber’s decision does not violateMr.Katanga’s rightto afair trial. The Appeals Chamber also emphasises that, consideringthe advanced stage of the proceedings, the Trial Chamber will need to be particularly vigilant in ensuring Mr.Katanga’s rightto be tried without undue delay. The proceedings before Trial Chamber II will continue in the way indicated by Trial ChamberII in its notice of the potential change in the legal characterisation of the facts.

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