Congo war criminal Katanga found guilty

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The International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague has found Congo militia leader Germain Katanga guilty of war crimes but acquitted him of sexual offences.

The court found it proven today that Katanga (35) was behind the 2003 mass murder of 200 villagers of Bogoro in northwestern Congo. He will hear his sentence on a later date. Kantanga is only the second war criminal about whom the ICC came to a ruling. In 2012 the court sentenced Thomas Lubanga to 14 years in jail for mass murder; Lubanga (52) founded and led the Union of Congolese Patriots (UPC) and was a key player in the Ituri conflict between the Lendu and Hema ethnic groups in the Ituri region of northeastern Congo (DRC). The ICC acquitted Katanga of rape, sexual slavery and using child soldiers. The court ruled that he was involved in the murder of Bogoro villagers who were shot by rebels as they tried to escape. The military leader who Congolese authorities surrendered to the ICC in 2007, has always maintained his innocence. Throughout the trial he has been incarcerated in a UN prison cell in Scheveningen.

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