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New ICC prosecutor agrees “justice must happen” in Gambia

May 31, 2021, 11:20 AM | Article By: Sanna Camara

Incoming prosecutor of the International Criminal Court said he “agrees” with The Gambia truth commission (TRRC) lead counsel that after testimonies linking exiled ex-ruler Yahya Jammeh to massacres, rape, “disappearances,” torture, etc., “Justice must happen”.

In a tweet at 11.38 a.m. on Saturday, May 30th 2021, the British Human Rights lawyer who will formally take office on the 16th of next month, replacing Prosecutor Fatou B. Bensouda of The Gambia, referenced a specific line in Mr. Faal’s closing remarks on the last day of public hearings of the Commission in The Gambia.

“I took this job because I felt at the time that terrible things had happened in my country and the call of duty had arrived. I have done cases of the highest order, I have done cases that are most complex. I have done cases that are most talked about – from genocide against sitting heads of state to some of the most notorious rebels. And I thought I had seen them all. But little did I know that the information that I was receiving about my country, disturbing as it was, was in fact the tip of the iceberg,” Mr. Faal went on.

“I think we have made a good case; even those who are in denial, if they search deep down they would see that the truth has come out. And the truth is, Jammeh took us on a wild ride for his own self-aggrandizement. He has to pay the price and those who enabled him also have to pay the price. Justice must be done; it must be seen to be done,” he concluded.

The election of Mr. Karim A. A. Khan as Chief Prosecutor of The Hague-based International Criminal Court took place at the second resumption of the nineteenth session of the Assembly of States Parties, which was convened at the United Nations Headquarters in New York on 12 February 2021.

It is not clear how much weight Mr. Khan, who was Assistant Secretary General of the United Nations Special Adviser and Head of UNITAD prior to his ICC job’s assumption of this important office would add to the efforts of the smallest country on mainland Africa’s immediate past, dubbed the “darkest” in its history.

However, it would augur well for the office of the prosecutor that had been criticized for indifference to so many occurrences of gross violations in the country.

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