More delays at court

Just when things had the slim possibility of getting more interesting than they had been in the Germain Katanga and Mathieu Ngudjolo Chui trials at the ICC (both being accused of crimes against humanity in the Democratic Republic of Congo), one the judges – Christine Van den Wyngaert, from Belgium – gets herself involved in a car accident and the whole trial has to be postponed until January.

The first week in the Katanga/Ngudjolo trial has been a little ludicrous.

First of all, technical hitches meant that the proceedings were not broadcast to the DRC, which certainly did little to boost the Court’s standing in the region. This meant that one of the first appearances in the court was of Sonia Robla, head of information, who apologised for this hic-cup.

Then the first witness, called by the prosecution, seemed to give rather contradictory answers and had certain problems defining what a kilometre is (he was adamant it was 100 metres), which apparently was quite pertinent to the trial. Or who was actually attacking the camp.

The pertinance of all of this was, however, lost on me and I was left wondering why the prosecution chose to led with such an apparently confused witness. Perhaps it was just to set the scene. Or something like that.

But we’re not going to find out until January now.

There was supposed to be a second witness testifying today, who was bound to be infinitely more interesting and perhaps even more helpful to the prosecution, but I guess he’s going to be sent home until after Christmas.

More delays at court.


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