News24

Lubanga 'exposed kids to harsh punishment'

2012-03-14 12:42

The Hague – The International Criminal Court said on Wednesdays that evidence against Thomas Lubanga a Congolese militia boss found guilty of war crimes demonstrated that children endured harsh training regiments and were subjected to harsh punishments.

The ICC convicted the militia boss of war crimes for using children in his rebel army, in the tribunal's first ever verdict.

Lubanga, 51, was found guilty of enlisting child soldiers to fight for his militia in a gold-rich region during the bloody four-year war in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) which ended in 2003.

"The chamber reached its decision unanimously that the prosecution has proved Thomas Lubanga guilty of crimes of conscription and enlisting children under the age of 15 and used them to participate in hostilities," presiding Judge Adrian Fulford told the Hague-based court, set up in 2002.

"The evidence demonstrated that children endured harsh training regiments and were subjected to hard punishment," Fulford said.

"The evidence demonstrated that the children were deployed... and took part in the fighting."

First transferred to The Hague in 2006, the alleged founder of the Union of Congolese Patriots (UPC) and chief commander of its military wing, went on trial in January 2009. He had pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Prosecutors told the court that militia under Lubanga's control abducted and conscripted children as young as 11 from their homes, schools and football fields to serve as soldiers, and that young girls were used as sex slaves.

The ICC is the world's only permanent criminal tribunal to try genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes.

Comments
  • eserfontein - 2012-03-14 12:51

    The Sierra Leonne effect. You'd think it's clear to any adult that no amount of gold, or diamonds, or money can replace the life of a child or any human being. you'd think so, but you'd be wrong. This is a good example of how morality has reached an alll time low.

      bluzulu - 2012-03-14 14:26

      Why hasn'y Bush and Blair been brought to justice for their part in the lies that has led the latest "cleansing" of the Arab world?

      clivecorbz - 2012-03-14 14:33

      I personally would say that morality was also pretty low during the time of the Mongols... Or any of the other warring, looting, raping tribes in the history of man... Heck, even Nazi Germany. But I'd hate for us to not feel special.

  • Jacobus - 2012-03-14 13:10

    EXPOSE HIM to some harsh punishment. No easy backdoor, like hanging, unless it is upside down.

  • Trevor Mashilo - 2012-03-14 13:11

    Well done to da ICC for putting Ruthless leaders were dey belong.Bt according to me Its no longer International Criminal Court it is basically African Criminal Court..Only African leaders will b prosecuted bcuz we aint't Immune to The ICC, only da Western Learbers r Immune to it.Dis court was Only set to Prejudice African learders.Civilised colonised Court to deal with africans.

      Bram - 2012-03-14 14:17

      Yaaaaawwwn

      bluzulu - 2012-03-14 14:27

      BUSH AND BLAIR should have been first in line,

      Shirley - 2012-03-14 14:31

      Are you not aware of the Bosnian trials? Your comment is rather one sided.

      edwardsch - 2012-03-14 14:59

      Grow up already and stop whining. Do the crime, do the time. End of story. Nothing but a bunch of thugs using any means that they can to take power.

      Riëtte - 2012-03-14 16:24

      Ag trevor, catch a wake up. Yes, there are white leaders who should be tried, but let's be honest, I don't see Blair and Bush and even Obama sending 10-year old boys stolen from parentst to shoot others, do you?

  • Jacobus - 2012-03-14 13:12

    Then again, the SANDF also recruited me as a soldier, when I was 17... could not get a license at that age for an airgun, but was given an automatic rifle and some instructions how to make it count.

      Jacobus - 2012-03-14 13:22

      If I did not do as told, I would have gone to jail for 5 years.

      Tolive - 2012-03-14 13:57

      And gave you an opportunity to defend your people against the onslaught of idolatry and ancestral worship that now govern your land and rape and murder your woman and children. I would say it was an honour - not something to complain about.

      Jacobus - 2012-03-14 14:24

      It forced me as a kid, and many younger than myself, to enforce a minority ideology, (based on warped religious believes much like yours, Tolive) with weapons, some of which has the nature of mass destruction. The stuff courts like these are created for. There is still miles and miles of landmines taking innocent lives, which your "the good guys" lay. Happy dreams.

      clivecorbz - 2012-03-14 14:50

      You doubt their ancestors, I doubt your Yaweh... But damn any government who forces me to fight you!

  • roberta.keeling - 2012-03-14 13:12

    Unfortunately he'll probably get off with a slap on the wrists. He should be hanged without any further ado!

  • Lynda - 2012-03-14 13:19

    Wow how do you punish someone for a crime of this magnitude.......it is gut wrenching to think of the damage he has caused to a nation of children

      Dawood - 2012-03-14 13:38

      @ Lynda he's only a pond on the board..at this very moment theres a movie out called KONY2012...watch the propoganda,and then google KONY2012 AND UGANDAS OIL,and see the real criminals of the world..this will get your blinders off and open your mind..thats the type of world we live in

      Jean - 2012-03-14 14:00

      Give him to their mothers to punish - that'll show him and Koni and all their ilk not to mess with kids!

  • SALife - 2012-03-14 13:29

    Sentence him to death or hand him over to the parents of the children or ebven better the kids theselves. Take him out. Send a message, a strong one.

  • magomarele - 2012-03-14 13:32

    He must be sentenced to death by hanging.

  • Saumya - 2012-03-14 13:36

    http://liveoncampus.com/wire/show/3351639 The International Criminal Court on Wednesday convicted Congolese militia boss Thomas Lubanga of war crimes for using children in his rebel army, in the tribunal's first ever verdict. Lubanga, 51, was found guilty of enlisting child soldiers to fight for his militia in a gold-rich region during the bloody four-year war in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) which ended in 2003. "The chamber reached its decision unanimously that the prosecution has proved Thomas Lubanga guilty of crimes of conscription and enlisting children under the age of 15 and used them to participate in hostilities," presiding Judge Adrian Fulford told the Hague-based court, set up in 2002. Here's the video for the same.

  • John - 2012-03-14 16:56

    Oh hell, this pathetic Bush and Blair BS from the peanut gallery again! Fact is, if there were no warlords like Saddam, the Taliban and the African idiots committing atrocities against woman and children, there wouldn't have been any action against them, oil or no oil! Why don't we see NATO bombs going off in Angola, an oil rich country? Oh, probably because they haven't got some idiot conscripting kids to fight a war of greed for them! Simple!

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