DRC doesn't rule out sending Ntaganda to ICC
15 May 2012, 12:55
Kinshasa - The Democratic Republic of Congo said on Monday that it did
not exclude transferring rebel leader Jean Bosco Ntaganda to the ICC,
where he is wanted for alleged war crimes committed in 2006.
"It is not excluded but it depends on the decision taken by our judges," government spokesperson Lambert Mende told AFP.
"He will be judged according to our laws, and it is our justice that will determine if he should be extradited or not."
dubbed the "Terminator", has been sought for years by the International
Criminal Court accused of using child soldiers.
But Kinshasa has
always refused to give him up, countering that Ntaganda had integrated
into the national army along with his CNDP rebels under a 2009 peace
deal, and that his cooperation was needed to stabilise the war-ravaged
However, the tone changed when a group of several hundred
National Congress for the Defence of the People (CNDP) loyalists
defected in April and began attacking army troops in Nord-Kivu.
Congo President Joseph Kabila consequently warned that any officers, be
it Ntaganda or anyone else who commit further acts of disobedience,
would be arrested and tried.
others who have been extradited, it is always Congolese justice that had
given a favourable opinion, and we had executed the transfer," Mende
said, referring to Thomas Lubanga, a former militia chief who was found
guilty in March of using child soldiers in a bloody conflict.
Mende said Kinshasa was also hunting Ntaganda over the recent clashes in Nord-Kivu between army troops and CNDP mutineers.
have our own grievances against the general Ntaganda, who was
associated at one moment with the peace process and who has commited an
act of felony, compounded by several blood crimes against both our army
"We intend to catch him and try him in our country," he added.
Ntaganda has fled with his men close to the border with Rwanda, according to the army.
on Monday, ICC chief prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo announced that he
wanted to add new charges against Ntaganda, including crimes against
humanity for murder, ethnic persecution, rape and sexual slavery.
also sought war crimes charges for "intentional attacks" against
civilians that led to murder, rape, sexual slavery and pillaging.