Wednesday, 28 May 2008

Actually, in Custody, but not in The Hague

My last post erroneously said Bemba was in The Hague. He isn't there yet, however. He apparently will appear before a court in Brussels this afternoon, and his lawyer says he will ask that he be released with an undertaking to remain in Belgium and to be available to the Court. I can't see how that would work, because he needs to be brought to The Hague to appear in order for the proceedings to go ahead. It will be for the International Criminal Court in The Hague to rule on whether he should be released during the proceedings.
But the hearing in Belgium will be interesting because it seems it is the first case of an accused contesting his transfer to the International Criminal Court. In the other cases, involving rebel leaders in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the accused have been rather acquiescent. They seem to prefer being taken to The Hague than being held in jail in Congo. I wonder why...

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