The Presiding Judge in the trial of Dominic Ongwen at the International Criminal court[ICC] has set March 10th 2020, as the date when lawyers will start making their closing statements.
Ongwen has been charged with 70 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity he is alleged to have committed as a commander of the Lord’s Resistance Army.
Presiding Judge Bertram Schmitt said in an order paper he released on Wednesday last week that he set that date because ‘‘it’s probable’’ all evidence on the paper will have been submitted by December 2019.
Judge Schmitt gave lawyers until February 26 next year to file their closing briefs. He said he will give further details concerning the closing statements.
Mr. Dahirou-Santa-Anna, the international cooperation advisor in the Office of the Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda recently said in a press conference that, by September 30th, about 51 defense witnesses had already testified again.
Mr. Dahirou also revealed that the defense initially indicated that they would present 72 witnesses, but it has since reduced their witness list to 69 individuals.
He also noted that the prosecution had presented evidence to prove Ongwen’s participation in the attacks on the four internally displaced persons (IDP) camps of Lukodi, Pajule, Odek, and Abok, but some defense witnesses had testified to the contrary.
Dominic Ongwen is alleged to have committed the crime he is accused of between July 2002 and December 2005 in northern Uganda. Ongwen has pleaded not guilty to all counts.