Central African Republic militia leader appears at ICC
THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — A Central African Republic lawmaker and militia leader who goes by the nickname Rambo has told the International Criminal Court that he was beaten and tortured after his arrest late last month in his country’s parliament.
Prosecutors at the global court allege that 43-year-old Alfred Yekatom is responsible for crimes including murder, torture and using child soldiers during fighting in his country’s bitter conflict. He allegedly commanded some 3,000 fighters in a predominantly Christian militia that killed Muslims in attacks between December 2013 and August 2014 in and around the capital, Bangui.
At his first appearance before ICC judges since his transfer to the Netherlands over the weekend, Yekatom on Friday confirmed his name, age and that he had read the charges. He wasn’t required to enter a plea.