Statement : |

Statement of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Fatou Bensouda, regarding increased violence in CAR: “crimes must stop!”

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Violence and clashes between armed groups in several parts of the Central African Republic ("CAR") have increased in the last months. I am deeply concerned about this development and the recent attacks reported in Bangassou, Bria and Alindao. The current situation appears extremely precarious with reports of violence and allegations of serious crimes committed against civilians, peacekeepers and humanitarian workers.  These reported crimes may fall under the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court ("ICC"), and must immediately stop. 

I urge all individuals and groups in the CAR engaged in violence, including those who appear to be linked to the anti-Balaka and ex-Seleka groups, to desist.

My Office is monitoring these developments very closely to assess what further action may be required.

We stand ready to assist the competent Central African authorities who have the primary duty to investigate and prosecute those allegedly responsible for these crimes.  

My Office has been investigating crimes committed in the CAR since 1st of August 2012, following a second referral by the national authorities. Our work in the country continues. I will not hesitate to take further action if these recent crimes fall within the jurisdiction of the ICC and will take all necessary measures to bring perpetrators to account, with full respect for the principle of complementarity.

The Office of the Prosecutor of the ICC conducts independent and impartial preliminary examinations, investigations and prosecution of the crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. The Office has been conducting investigations in: Uganda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Darfur (Sudan), the Central African Republic (two separate investigations), Kenya, Libya, Côte d'Ivoire, Mali and Georgia. The Office is also conducting preliminary examinations relating to the situations in Afghanistan, Colombia, Guinea, Iraq/UK, Palestine, Nigeria, Ukraine, Burundi, Gabon and the registered vessels of Comoros, Greece and Cambodia.

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Source : Office of the Prosecutor