central africa 158


The Hague: The Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) said that two of the leaders of the alleged militias of the Central African Republic, one of them prominent in the African football community, used self-defence groups to violently attack the country’s Muslim population.
Prosecutors said Patrice-Edouard Ngaissona, who later became the executive of the African Football Association, incited the flames of ethnic conflict in 2013 after being expelled by the main Muslim “Seleka” militia.
“From exile, Mr. Ngaissona used (Christian militia) and used their revenge and hatred to defeat Celec,” Chief Prosecutor Kweku VanderPuy told the judge at the “acceptance confirmation” hearing on Thursday.
After hearing the indictment, the judge will decide whether there is sufficient evidence to advance the trial. Ngaissona and his co-defendant, Alfred Yekatom, previously denied misconduct.
The prosecutor said that Ngaissona was one of the top leaders of the Christian-dominated militia known as “anti-Balaka”, while Yekatom was the commander of the same force during the 2013-2014 battle. The name in the local Sango language means that it can block enemy weapons.
The Central African Republic has been mired in violence because in March 2013, a “union” of the rebel Seleka or Sango, mainly of the north and mainly Muslims, seized power. Their barbaric rule led to opposition to the Baraka militias.
Yekatom’s defense pointed out that the prosecutor unfairly blocked their defense by failing to disclose most of the evidence related to Seleka’s crimes.
The International Criminal Court conducted a separate investigation into the so-called Seleka crimes.
The Central African human rights organization attending the hearing said that the capital, Bangui, is paying close attention to the trial, and some believe that there are double standards.
“You can not only charge one side but also leave the other side. We believe that the International Criminal Court should sue two camps,” Mathias Morouba of the Central African OCDH Rights Monitoring Agency told Reuters.

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