Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Uganda: ICC still calling for Kony's arrest

Take this report and change the name of Kony to Bashir (and Uganda to Sudan) to get an idea of what Khartoum regime and its followers must be thinking when it comes to Darfur rebels getting UN troops onside.

Aug 28 2006 Reuters/CFD ICC Still Calling for Kony's Arrest:
International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutors said on Monday they still hoped for the arrest of leaders of the rebel Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) despite an offer of amnesty by Uganda under the terms of a truce.

Leaders of the cult-like rebels, who are infamous for massacring civilians, mutilating survivors and kidnapping thousands of children, are wanted by the Hague-based Court to face war crimes charges.

"We believe that the countries or the states which have an obligation to execute the arrest warrant will do so," the court's deputy prosecutor Fatou Bensouda told journalists.

"We still maintain that because we think those persons who bear the greatest responsibility should not go unpunished."

He was speaking at a news conference called to discuss a separate case and reiterating the Court's position.

The ICC issued arrest warrants against LRA leader Joseph Kony and his deputies last year but has no police force to hunt down its targets, so must rely on Ugandan, Sudanese and former southern Sudanese rebel troops to bring them to justice.

Under the terms of a truce agreed on Saturday, Uganda has offered amnesty to LRA leaders, including those hunted by the ICC, if they abandon their hideouts and assemble at two Sudanese camps within the next three weeks to thrash out a final deal.

The LRA said all leaders including the ICC indictees would come to the camps.

Asked about Uganda's truce offer, Bensouda said: "We certainly hope that they will execute the warrant that has been issued against the top leaders of the LRA."

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