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Ongwen trial hearing starts January 21 :: Uganda Radionetwork

Ongwen trial hearing starts January 21

The International Criminal Court ICC says the confirmation of charges hearing in the case involving former commander of the Lords Resistance Army LRA Dominic Ongwen shall run for six days.
The International Criminal Court (ICC) says the confirmation of charges hearing in the case involving former commander of the Lord\'s Resistance Army (LRA) Dominic Ongwen shall run for six days.

According to the press statement from the Public Affairs Unit of ICC, the hearing is set to run from January 21-27 at the Hague based court in Pre-Trial Chamber II starting at 09:30 Hague local time.

The confirmation of charges hearing is held to determine whether there is sufficient evidence to establish substantial grounds to believe that the person committed each of the crimes charged.

If charges are confirmed, the Pre-Trial Chamber commits the case for trial before a Trial Chamber, which conducts the subsequent phase of the proceedings before a a final verdict can be given.

On the contrary, if at the end of the confirmation of charges hearing, the court finds that there is no sufficient evidence pinning Ongwen, the charges will be dropped and he is set free.

Jimmy Otim, one of the out-reach coordinators in Uganda told URN that there will be live screening of Ongwen proceedings in his home town of Gulu for his victims to closely follow as they search for justice.

Ongwen was transferred to the ICC on 20 January 2015 in honour of the arrest warrant by the ICC on 8 July 2005 for crimes against humanity and war crimes that he allegedly committed against the people of Northern Uganda when he was one of the top commanders of Joseph Kony two decade war.

He shortly made his initial appearance before the ICC on January 21 last year before Pre-Trial single Bulgarian judge Ekaterina Trendafilova to identify himself by revealing his full name, date and place of birth and his current occupation.

Ongwen faces three counts of crimes against humanity (murder; enslavement; inhumane acts of inflicting serious bodily injury and suffering) and four counts of war crimes (murder; cruel treatment of civilians; intentionally directing an attack against a civilian population; pillaging) allegedly committed on or about 20 May, 2004 at the Lukodi IDP Camp in the Gulu District.

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