CAR’s UN-Backed Court Issues Warrant for Country’s Ex-Leader Bozize Over ‘Crimes Against Humanity’

in Guinea-Bissau since March 2023. He’s been accused of “crimes against humanity and incitement of genocide” by the CAR authorities.

The Special Criminal Court of the Central African Republic has issued an international arrest warrant against former President Francois Bozize.

According to the statement, the order was given for alleged “crimes against humanity” committed between February 2009 and March 2013 by the presidential guard and other internal security forces and services in the civil prisons and military training centers.

The warrant was issued on February 27, as per the communiqué.

The judges found that “the existence of serious and consistent evidence against [Bozize], likely to incur his criminal liability in his capacity as hierarchical superior and military leader.”

The Special Criminal Court is a hybrid jurisdiction, situated in the capital city of Bangui, that consists of both Central African and foreign magistrates who are responsible for examining war crimes that have occurred in the country since 2003.

Back in 2014, amid years of ongoing instability in the country, the CAR transitional government and the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the CAR (MINUSCA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding requiring the government to establish a “Special Criminal Court.”

In December 2014, MINUSCA published a report recommending the creation of a special court within the CAR legal system, as hybrid or internationalized justice efforts could benefit the accountability process in a way that is not possible in purely national proceedings.

On April 22, 2015, the National Transitional Council (interim parliament) adopted a law on the creation, organization and operation of the Special Criminal Court, and in June of the same year, interim President Catherine Samba-Panza promulgated the law.

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