Lubanga trial judge delays ruling

ICC judges urged not to consider releasing Congolese militia leader.

    Prosecutors accuse Lubanga of training children to kill in Congo's Ituri region [EPA]

    Postponement

    Judge Adrian Fulford said he first had to consider the prosecution's request before he could consider freeing Lubanga.

    The case was suspended last week over concerns that Lubanga could be denied a fair trial due to withheld evidence.

    The trial had been due to start on Monday, but judges postponed it following complaints from the defence that prosecutors had not handed over about 200 documents.

    Lubanga's defence team told the court that the halt to proceedings should automatically trigger his release.

    However, Ekkehard Withopf, for the prosecution, said: "There is no legal basis for the request."

    Meanwhile, Carine Bapita Buyangandu, a lawyer representing the victims, warned the release of Lubanga could reignite conflict in Congo's Ituri region, where Lubanga stands accused of conscripting children under the age of 15 to fight soldiers.

    "There will be a fire ball in Ituri and we will all be held accountable throughout history for this. We have waited 20 months," she said.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Lost childhoods: Nigeria's fear of 'witchcraft' ruins young lives

    Lost childhoods: Nigeria's fear of 'witchcraft' ruins young lives

    Many Pentecostal churches in the Niger Delta offer to deliver people from witchcraft and possession - albeit for a fee.

    The priceless racism of the Duke of Edinburgh

    The priceless racism of the Duke of Edinburgh

    Prince Philip has done the world an extraordinary service by exposing the racist hypocrisy of "Western civilisation".

    China will determine the future of Venezuela

    China will determine the future of Venezuela

    There are a number of reasons why Beijing continues to back Maduro's government despite suffering financial losses.