The “Invisible Children” finally get some justice
The International Criminal Court convicted a Congolese warlord on Wednesday of using child soldiers, a verdict hailed as a legal landmark in the fight against impunity for the world’s most serious crimes.
Human rights advocates said the guilty verdicts against Thomas Lubanga – the first judgment in the court’s 10-year history – should stand as a clear deterrent to armies around the world not to conscript children.
Actress and activist Angelina Jolie watched the verdicts from the court’s public gallery and called them a victory for former child soldiers.
“This is their day – where these children will feel there is no impunity for what happened to them, for what they suffered,” Jolie said.
Lubanga will be sentenced following a hearing that will be scheduled later this year. He faces a maximum of life imprisonment.
The judgment came at a time when the court is under scrutiny for its inability to arrest key war crimes suspects and its impotence in not being able to intervene in the bloody conflict raging in Syria.
The court was catapulted into the limelight last week by the viral video Kony 2012, which highlighted how it still has not had Ugandan rebel Joseph Kony arrested nearly seven years after indicting him for crimes including using child soldiers, murder and torture.
Maybe Joseph Kony is next…
Image via AP