Sonntag, 30. August 2020

How France is tracking war criminals

 An interesting article about the french special unit OCLCH (Office central de lutte contre les crimes contre l'humanité, les génocides, les crimes de guerre) destined to identify and track war criminals. It has the particularity that it consists of members of Gendarmerie and Police.

The unit was created in 2013 and since then the men and women of this office tracked war criminals from Ex-Yugoslavia to Rwanda.

Recently, in may 2020, the officers of the OCLCH identified and arrested Félicien Kabuga bankroller of the genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda 1992.

The same fate is approaching to syrian war criminals.

"Saturday May 16, 2020, Asnières (Hauts-de-Seine). The first light of day appears when investigators discreetly get out of their cars. Head to a neat five-story building. On the back of their uniform, five words: "Office central war crimes." It is here, in this small street in the Parisian suburbs, that lives one of the main culprits of the genocide in Rwanda, perpetrated in 1994. That year, 800,000 people, according to the UN, were killed in a few weeks after the decision of the Hutu extremists in power to exterminate the Tutsi ethnic group.
Félicien Kabuga is suspected of having financed a bloodthirsty militia and of having called for the massacre of Tutsis through the Mille Collines radio station, of which he was one of the leaders. This Rwandan is targeted by an arrest warrant from the International Mechanism, the UN structure responsible for completing the work of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR). Pursued by international justice for ... twenty-six years.

Montag, 17. August 2020

Raslan Trial: testimony of former intelligence operative at "Al-Khatib"-branch

 An anonymous witness who claims to have worked at "Al-Khatib"-branch has incrimanted the defendant, detailing torture methods and the chain of command that Raslan was heading, taz

"The witness will appear “partially masked”, says the presiding judge Anne Kerber. Because of "the risk situation" he does not have to give his personal details. The identity of the witness, who testified on Wednesday and Thursday in room 128 of the Koblenz Higher Regional Court, is kept secret, in the files he is named Z 28/07/16. It is the first such testimony of its kind in the trial in which two Syrians have been on trial for crimes against humanity since the end of April.

Raslan trial: testimony of lawyer Anwar Bunni

 On june 5 2020 it was the turn of Berlin based lawyer and longstanding opposition figure Anwar Bunni to testify on his experiences with the defendant Anwar Raslan and how he recognised him in a Berlin refugee accomodation in 2015, taz:

"At noon, before his testimony in the Koblenz Higher Regional Court begins, Anwar al-Bunni stands in front of the courthouse with tears in his eyes. "It is good that there is this process, but that is not enough," says the human rights attorney, pointing to the framed photo portraits behind him.

Raslan Trial: testimony of film director Feras Fayyad

 On june 6 film director Feras Fayyad, notable for his documentary "Last Men in Aleppo", has testified in court against defendant Anwar Raslan. Taz!5686468/:

"Firas Fayyad thinks he can remember the birthmark on the face of the man who questioned him. It was noticeable, he says. And he had to think of his mother, who told him as a little boy about her own moles: Everyone stands for a wish that has not come true. Fayyad is sitting on the witness bench in room 128 in the Koblenz Higher Regional Court - and what he says has little to do with unfulfilled wishes. And a lot with what you definitely don't want to experience: beatings, torture, rape.