The Multilateralist

The ICC’s trials and tribulations

The on-again, off-again trial of Congolese warlord Thomas Lubanga Dyilo is back on. The International Criminal Court’s appeals chamber today ordered the resumption of the trial, which had been halted because of a dispute between prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo and the trial judges over confidentiality. While the appeals judges sided with the prosecution on the ...

The on-again, off-again trial of Congolese warlord Thomas Lubanga Dyilo is back on. The International Criminal Court’s appeals chamber today ordered the resumption of the trial, which had been halted because of a dispute between prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo and the trial judges over confidentiality. While the appeals judges sided with the prosecution on the question of resuming the trial, they did find that the prosecutor had improperly flouted court rulings.

The Appeals Chamber considers, however, that the Trial Chamber erred by resorting immediately to a stay of proceedings without first imposing sanctions to bring about the Prosecutor’s compliance with its orders. ‘Sanctions are a key tool for Chambers to maintain control of proceedings within the trial framework and to safeguard a fair trial without having to have recourse to the drastic remedy of staying proceedings’, stated Judge Song in the summary of the judgments.

The ICC is approaching a decade in operation and still has not achieved a conviction.

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