Press Release: 21 June 2024

Situation in Mali: ICC unseals arrest warrant against Iyad Ag Ghaly

International Criminal Court

Today, 21 June 2024, Pre-Trial Chamber I of the International Criminal Court (“ICC” or “the Court”), at the request of the Prosecutor, made public an arrest warrant against Iyad Ag Ghaly for war crimes and crimes against humanity allegedly committed in northern Mali between January 2012 and January 2013. The arrest warrant was initially issued under seal on 18 July 2017. Mr Ghaly is not detained by the ICC.

Mr Ghaly, also known as "Abou Fadl”, was born in the Kidal region, is of Malian nationality, of Tuareg ethnicity, and a member of the Ifoghas tribe. There are reasonable grounds to believe that he would be the undisputed leader of Ansar Eddine, which at the time had control of Timbuktu, Mali, jointly with Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb ("AQIM").

Mr Ghaly is suspected of being responsible for the following crimes:

  • war crimes: murder of soldiers placed hors de combat in Aguelhoc; rape, sexual slavery and any other form of sexual violence; violence to person (mutilation, cruel treatment and torture) and outrages upon personal dignity (humiliating and degrading treatment); intentionally directing attacks against buildings dedicated to religion and historic monuments; and

  • crimes against humanity: imprisonment or other severe deprivation of physical liberty; rape, sexual slavery and any other form of sexual violence; torture; other inhumane acts causing great suffering, or serious injury to body or to mental or physical health; persecution on religious grounds; and persecution of women and girls on gender grounds.

These crimes were allegedly committed in Mali, in Timbuktu between January 2012 and January 2013, and for the crime of murder of soldiers, in Aguelhoc on 24 January 2012. Mr Ghaly is suspected of having committed these crimes jointly with others and/or through others; ordering, soliciting or inducing their commission or aiding, abetting or otherwise assisting in the commission of these crimes; or in any other way contributing to the commission or these crimes; and/or as a military commander.

The Chamber ordered the Registrar of the Court to prepare a request for cooperation in the arrest and surrender of the suspect, and to address it to the competent authorities of any relevant State and/or any other relevant authority.

Decision issuing a public redacted version of the warrant of arrest against Mr Iyad Ag Ghaly

Arrest warrant

For further information, please contact Fadi El Abdallah, Spokesperson and Head of Public Affairs Unit, International Criminal Court, by telephone at: +31 (0)70 515-9152 or +31 (0)6 46448938 or by e-mail at: [email protected]

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