The Hague/New York, 28 April 2008 – Ms. Radhika Coomaraswamy, Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict, has visited the International Criminal Court after the official submission of an “amicus curiae” with regard to the case of Thomas Lubanga Dyilo. Lubanga is the founder and leader of the Union of Congolese Patriots in the Ituri region of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and will be tried before the ICC for the conscription and enlistment of children under the age of 15 and the use of children for active participation in hostilities.
The Amicus Curiae is a legal brief containing observations on the definition of “conscripting and enlisting” children and on the interpretation of the term “participation in hostilities”. The office of the Special Representative is urging a case by case method with a broad interpretation of the terms so as to capture the true reality of the DRC. The submission of the document follows the decision of Trial Chamber I of the ICC inviting Observations from the Office of the Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict.
“We believe that the Lubanga’s trial represents a crucial step in the fight against impunity – Ms. Coomaraswamy said – and will have a decisive deterrent effect against perpetrators of this outrageous crime against humanity.
While at the International Criminal Court the Special Representative met the Court’s Registrar, Ms. Silvana Arbia.
For more information please contact:
– Alec Wargo, Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict – firstname.lastname@example.org – +1 347-967-8606 (travelling with the SRSG)
– Luca Solimeo, Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict – email@example.com – +1 917-367-3563 (in New York)