ICC Haskanita Darfur Sudan: Prosecutor v. Bahar Idriss Abu Garda 19 October 2009
Most of them (the soldiers) were shot at close range; they were executed.
This was an intentional attack against persons and objects with protected status under international criminal law ... leaving thousands of civilians unprotected.
The ICC will have 60 days from the end of the confirmation of charges hearing, scheduled to last until October 29, to decide whether there is enough evidence for the case to go to trial.
From (AFP) – Monday, 19 October 2009. Copy:
Sudan rebel leader ordered AU murders: court told
THE HAGUE — Fighters commanded by Darfur rebel chief Bahar Idriss Abu Garda brutally murdered 12 African peacekeepers before looting their camp in 2007, the International Criminal Court (ICC) heard on Monday.See Reuters report October 19, 2009: Sudan rebel leader appears in Hague court - Prosecutor says AU peacekeepers were "executed". Attack was launched to gain equipment, recognition. Abu Garda denies charges, appears voluntarily.
"This attack was planned and executed under the command of Mr Abu Garda," prosecutor Fatou Bensouda told the court at the start of a hearing to confirm charges against him for the attack on the Haskanita military base in north Darfur.
"Most of them (the soldiers) were shot at close range; they were executed," she said.
The September 2007 attack killed 12 African Union peacekeepers and seriously wounded eight others. They were from Nigeria, Mali, Senegal, Botswana and Gambia.
Abu Garda is the first person to appear before the ICC in The Hague for war crimes allegedly committed during the Sudan conflict.
"This case is about a deliberate attack against peacekeepers," Bensouda told the court as the United Resistance Front leader sat making notes in a light suit and striped tie across the courtroom.
"This was an intentional attack against persons and objects with protected status under international criminal law."
The prosecutor said Abu Garda's men then ransacked the camp, making off with military hardware and personal possessions like cellphones, before razing the base, "leaving thousands of civilians unprotected".
The court will have 60 days from the end of the confirmation of charges hearing, scheduled to last until October 29, to decide whether there is enough evidence for the case to go to trial. [...]
Photo: Darfur rebel Bahar Idriss Abu Garda. Source: EPA/Telegraph 19 May 2009: Sudanese rebel leader in court over war crimes - A Sudanese Darfur rebel leader appeared before the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague on Monday charged with war crimes over the killing of 12 African Union peacekeepers in 2007.
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