News just came out about this…
Thomas Lubanga, who has been accused of conscripting and forcing children to fight in the armed wing of the UPC movement in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), might not be facing charges after all. The case was suspended last week due to issues of withheld evidence and questions of a fair trial. According to this article:
…Judges have ruled that the former warlord cannot get a fair trial because the prosecution has failed to hand over documents to the defence or court which could potentially prove his innocence or mitigate any sentence.
Despite the fact that:
Anneke Van Woudenberg of Human Rights Watch, who is in the DRC, said: “We’ve documented numerous crimes by Lubanga. It would be a real catastrophe if this trial does not go ahead, not only would it be a blow against justice, it would send a signal that warlords are not going to be held to account. At the same time, it is vital that the trial is free and fair.”
According the the prosecution however, there is no legal basis for the request that the trial be dismissed based on the fact that the prosecution had not handed over 200 documents. See link:
Today, a ceasefire signed recently by various factions in the DRC is breached regularly and there are still about 30,000 child soldiers.