DR Congo

Statement of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Sexual Violence in Conflict, Ms. Pramila Patten, on the conviction by ICC of Bosco Ntaganda for Crimes Against Humanity and War Crimes including Rape and Sexual Slavery

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Press Statement: For Immediate Release

(New York, 08 November 2019)

I welcome that the International Criminal Court (ICC) has handed down a historic 30-year sentence to Bosco Ntaganda on 18 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity, including murder, rape, sexual slavery and conscripting and enlisting children. These crimes took place in Ituri, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) from 2002 to 2003, when Ntaganda was a commander of the Patriotic Force for the Liberation of Congo (FPLC).

From the first day I took Office, accountability has been a cornerstone of my advocacy and action to prevent and address the scourge of conflict-related sexual violence. Thirty years is the longest sentence of imprisonment ever pronounced by the ICC. This is also the first time an ICC conviction has included sexual slavery, marking an important step forward in how we address these crimes.

While noting that Ntaganda has already signaled an intention to appeal, I view this sentence as an important step towards accountability for victims whose lives have been shattered by acts of conflict-related sexual violence. It sends a strong signal and should serve as a powerful deterrent to others. I commend the victims and witnesses who bravely testified in this case and look forward to the Court’s consideration of reparations for those subjected to these heinous crimes, who have a right to meaningful redress including restitution, compensation and rehabilitation.

For media inquiries, please contact:

Géraldine Boezio, Office of the Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict,

New York. Tel: +1 917 367-3306 geraldine.boezio@un.org