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Wednesday, August 10, 2022

CONFIRMED: International Court Finally Announces Judgement Date for War Case in which DR Congo Wants Uganda to Pay Shs15 Trillion

International Court of Justice (ICJ) has announced dates for the delivery of a judgement in war case involving Uganda and DR Congo.

Between 1996 and 2003, several countries and militia fought in eastern DR Congo, in a series of brutal wars that claimed thousands of lives and involved exploitation of natural resources like minerals and timber.

In June 1999, DR Congo filed a case at the ICJ accusing its neighbours Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi of committing acts of armed aggression, abuse of human rights and looting of resources, in violation of the UN and African Union charters. But it withdrew the accusations against Burundi and Rwanda in 2001.

Uganda claimed that it had invaded its neighbour in self-defence, due to DR Congo providing political and military support to anti-government rebels based in its territory, as well as following attacks on its embassy and abuse of the rights its citizens in the capital Kinshasa.

But in 2005, the ICJ ruled that Uganda invaded its neighbour illegally and DR Congo had not consented to the Ugandan military operating in its territory.

It ordered the countries to negotiate reparations but DR Congo told the court in 2015 that the talks had failed.

The Democratic Republic of Congo is seeking $4.3 billion (Shs15.56 trillion) in compensation over its conflict with Uganda in the 1990s, as the top UN court began hearing the dispute on Tuesday.

Now, the ICJ has set a judgement date for the case.

“On 9 February 2022, the International Court of Justice, the principal judicial organ of the United Nations, will deliver its Judgment on the question of reparations in the case concerning Armed Activities on the Territory of the Congo (Democratic Republic of the Congo v. Uganda). A public sitting of the Court will take place at 3 p.m. at the Peace Palace in The Hague, during which the President of the ICJ, Judge Joan E. Donoghue, will read out the Court’s decision,” read a notice from the court’s registry based in the Hague.

“In view of the current COVID-19 pandemic, only Members of the Court and representatives of the Parties will be present in the Great Hall of Justice. Members of the diplomatic corps, the media and the public will be able to follow the reading through a live webcast on the Court’s website, as well as on UN Web TV.”

Additional Reporting: BBC

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