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Angelina Jolie praises the International Criminal Court

Wednesday, March 14, 2012 - 00:55

Mar. 14 - The actress and UN Ambassador witnesses the courts first ever ruling against warlord Thomas Lubanga Dyilo. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).

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ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: The Hague international war crimes court found Congolese warlord Thomas Lubanga Dyilo guilty, in its first ever ruling on Wednesday (March 14) after a decade of work limited largely to Africa while major cases in the Middle East and Asia remain beyond its reach. Lubanga was found guilty of recruiting and deploying child soldiers during a five-year conflict until 2003. An estimated 60,000 people were killed. Lubanga, 51, was detained six years ago and faced three counts of war crimes. He could face up to life imprisonment, although a sentence will not be passed immediately. An appeal can be filed within 30 days. UNHCR Ambassador Angelina Jolie was present in the public gallery, when judges handed down the verdict. "I think, the most important thing is, this is very young court, very new court, this particular case was about the conscription of child soldiers, so many witnesses, over sixty people came in, young people came in, and spoke about what happened to them and because they were unable to have court proceedings in their country, they asked for this, the victims asked for this, the country asked for this," she said as she addressed journalists before leaving. Umbrella organization Coalition for International Criminal Court welcomed the guilty verdict, according to their legal advisor Sunil Pal. A conviction could help lend momentum to other prominent cases, such as that against former Ivory Coast president Laurent Gbagbo. Gbagbo is charged with individual responsibility on counts of crimes against humanity - murder, rape and other forms of sexual violence and persecution.

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Angelina Jolie praises the International Criminal Court

Wednesday, March 14, 2012 - 00:55