The Presidential Decree was signed at the end of the week on the appointment of three new international judges to the Special Criminal Tribunal for the Central African Republic. It is a crucial step towards holding the first trials promised this year. Established in 2015 and in operation since 2018, this mixed court, which employs Central African and foreign judges, must try serious crimes committed since 2003 in the country.
With our special correspondent in Bangui, Florence morice
The three new international judges at the Special Court are from Belgium, Burkina Faso and Madagascar. Their appointment was eagerly awaited. Last October again, during the inauguration of the building before the Court, its President Landry Michel Louanga lamented the difficulties of these appointments.
He mentioned in particular the lack of “enthusiasm” among the partner countries to make judges available to him. However, as the CPS is a hybrid court, all its instances must be composed of Central African and foreign judges under punishment in order to be blocked.
From now on, and this is an important step, nothing should stand in the way of the creation of the Assize Court, which the authorities have promised will hold its first trials this year without saying who will be tried or to what deadline. .
Since the initial SPC audience in 2018, ten cases were referred to the examination court. And about fifteen people are officially detained in the Ngaragba prison and its annex to the red-haired camp.
But the court refuses to reveal their identities. This election is regularly criticized, especially by the NGO Amnesty International. The court justifies it with the uncertainty that prevails in the country, of which 2/3 is below control of armed groups.