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

    Survivor stories from Super Typhoon Haiyan

    Survivor stories from Super Typhoon Haiyan

    The Philippines’ Typhoon Haiyan was the strongest storm ever to make landfall. Five years on, we revisit this story.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    Thou Shalt Not Kill: Israel's Hilltop Youth

    Thou Shalt Not Kill: Israel's Hilltop Youth

    Meet the hardline group willing to do anything, including going against their government, to claim land for Israel.