ICC to rule Oct 19 on Bemba challenge to war crimes trial

8th October 2010, Comments 0 comments

The International Criminal Court said Friday that it will rule on October 19 on a challenge by former Democratic Republic of Congo vice president Jean-Pierre Bemba against his war crimes trial.

In a statement the court said it would issue its ruling on an appeal by Bemba challenging the admissibility of the case against him, which has delayed the start of his war crimes from June.

Bemba, 47, stands accused of three charges of war crimes and two of crimes against humanity allegedly committed in the Central African Republic from October 2002 to March 2003.

Bemba's lawyers assert that he has already been investigated in the CAR and could not be prosecuted for the same crime twice.

Bemba, who left the DR Congo in April 2007, a year after losing a presidential election amid a political transition that followed a 1998-2003 civil war, was arrested on an ICC warrant in Brussels in May 2008.

© 2010 AFP

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