THE HAGUE — The International Criminal Court sentenced a Congolese warlord to 14 years in prison on Tuesday, a watershed moment for the 10-year-old tribunal and a potential landmark in the struggle to protect children during wartime.
Judges found Thomas Lubanga guilty in March of recruiting and using children in his Union of Congolese Patriots militia - sending them to kill and be killed during fighting in Congo’s eastern Ituri region in 2002-2003.
Tuesday’s announcement was the first time the tribunal had sentenced a convicted war criminal.
Human rights activists hailed the decision.
“This sentence sends out a stark warning across the world to those engaged in the use of child soldiers that their criminal actions will land them in prison,” said Armel Luhiriri of the Coalition for the ICC, a nongovernmental group that supports the court’s efforts to end impunity for the world’s worst crimes.
Prosecutors had asked for a 30-year sentence, but said they would be willing to cut it to 20 years if Lubanga offered a “genuine apology” to the victims of his crimes. He did not offer an apology.
Warrant issued for president’s brother
SEOUL — A court issued an arrest warrant late Tuesday for the elder brother of South Korea’s president on bribery allegations, a major embarrassment to the ruling party in a presidential election year.
The Seoul Central District Court issued the warrant hours after enraged protesters threw eggs at Lee Sang-deuk, grabbing his tie and jostling him as he entered the court for questioning.
A court official declined to provide further details, including his name or when Mr. Lee might be arrested, citing court procedures.
Prosecutors have accused the former lawmaker of taking half a million dollars in bribes from two detained bankers with the intent of using his influence to help the bankers avoid punishment.
Mr. Lee wasn’t directly hit by any of the eggs, but some yolk could be seen on his shoulder. He didn’t speak to a swarm of reporters gathered at the court, shaking off the protesters and media mobbing him before walking through a security checkpoint.
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