ICC convicts DR Congo warlord Germain Katanga for war crimes

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The International Criminal Court on Friday convicted Congolese ex-militia boss Germain Katanga of being an accessory to war crimes and crimes against humanity for a 2003 village massacre.

“The chamber by majority finds Germain Katanga guilty… of complicity in the crimes committed on February 24, 2003,” said judge Bruno Cotte.

Katanga was convicted of murder and pillaging but cleared of rape, sexual slavery and using child soldiers in the attack.

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The court will sentence Katanga, the one-time commander of the ethnic-based Patriotic Resistance Forces in Ituri (FRPI) operating in the DR Congo’s mineral-rich northeast, at another hearing.

The verdict was only the ICC’s third since opening its doors more than a decade ago, and the first involving sexual violence charges.

Katanga, 35, went on trial more than four years ago facing seven counts of war crimes and three of crimes against humanity, including murder, sexual slavery and rape for his alleged role in the attack on the small village of Bogoro in 2003.-nation.co.ke

This November 24, 2009 file photo shows former Congolese warlord militiaman Germain Katanga sitting in the courtroom of the International Criminal Court in The Hague. AFP PHOTO / MICHAEL KOOREN

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