[QODLink]
Africa

DR Congo warlord leaves Rwanda for The Hague

Bosco Ntaganda on his way to International Criminal Court in The Hague in custody of ICC officials.
Last Modified: 22 Mar 2013 14:36

Democratic Republic of Congo rebel leader Bosco Ntaganda has left Rwanda with International Criminal Court officials for trial in The Hague, officials said.

"Bosco Ntaganda has just taken off from Kigali in custody of ICC officials," Rwandan foreign minister Louise Mushikiwabo said in a message on her Twitter account on Friday, referring to the Congo warlord dubbed 'The Terminator'.

Ntaganda surprised US embassy staff in Kigali on Monday when he walked in off the street and asked for help in reaching the ICC, where he is wanted on charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity.

The ICC also confirmed on Friday that he had left Kigali and was "heading to the ICC detention centre in The Hague" in The Netherlands.

"This is the first time that a suspect has surrendered himself voluntarily to be in the ICC's custody," the court said in a statement, thanking American, Dutch and Rwandan authorities for their support.

Ntaganda is wanted on seven charges of war crimes and three of crimes against humanity allegedly committed in DR Congo.

He was allegedly involved in the brutal murder of at least 800 people in villages in the eastern DR Congo, using child soldiers in his rebel army and keeping women as sex slaves between September 2002 and September 2003.

On arrival in The Hague, Ntaganda will receive a medical checkup before appearing "as soon as possible" before judges, where he will then be read the charges against him.

A date will also be set at that point for the "opening of the confirmation of charges hearing, a preliminary step to decide whether the case will be referred to a trial or not," the ICC added.

277

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
At least 25 tax collectors have been killed since 2012 in Mogadishu, a city awash in weapons and abject poverty.
Tokyo government claims its homeless population has hit a record low, but analysts - and the homeless - beg to differ.
3D printers can cheaply construct homes and could soon be deployed to help victims of catastrophe rebuild their lives.
Lack of child protection laws means abandoned and orphaned kids rely heavily on the care of strangers.
Featured
Booming global trade in 50-million-year-old amber stones is lucrative, controversial, and extremely dangerous.
Legendary Native-American High Bird was trained in ancient warrior traditions, which he employed in World War II.
Hounded opposition figure says he's hoping for the best at sodomy appeal but prepared to return to prison.
Fears of rising Islamophobia and racial profiling after two soldiers killed in separate incidents.
Group's culture of summary justice is back in Northern Ireland's spotlight after new sexual assault accusations.