Uganda’s International Crimes Division still blocked

23 July 2014 by Samuel Okiror, Kampala (Uganda)

The International Crimes Division (ICD) was created in July 2008 as part of efforts to  prove Uganda’s capacity to investigate top commanders of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA). But today the ICD’s work is being impeded by the competing demands of prosecution and amnesty. 

In 2004, Uganda became the first country to refer a case to the International Criminal Court (ICC). Five defendants of the LRA, including leader Joseph Kony, are wanted by the ICC, but none has yet appeared in The Hague. In the meantime, Uganda developed its own court for prosecuting war crimes and crimes against humanity: the ICD.  

The ICD has been recently conducting investigations into 18 former LRA rebels, said the head of its prosecutions, Joan Kagezi, in an interview with IJT. “We shall continue with the investigations,” said Kagezi. The 18 cases include those of six non-Ugandans – repatriated to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), South Sudan and the Central African Republic (CAR) – and two senior commanders who have been identified for prosecution. “We are finalizing our investigation on the two commanders. We hope to take them to court,” said Kagezi, preferring not to cite names or a timeframe.

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