The International Criminal Court (ICC) on Wednesday granted reparations of more than $56 million to thousands of victims of Dominic Ongwen, a convicted commander in the Ugandan rebel group the Lord’s Resistance Army. An ICC appeals panel also upheld his convictions and 25-year sentence.
Ongwen, who was not in court for the reparations hearing, was convicted in late 2022 of 61 offenses, including murders, rapes, forced marriages and recruiting child soldiers between 2002 and
The nearly 50,000 victims covered by Wednesday’s order included former child soldiers and children born as a result of rapes and forced pregnancies. According to the Presiding Judge, Bertram Schmitt, tens of
thousands of individuals suffered tremendous harm due to the unimaginable atrocities committed as rebel fighters led by

Ongwen attacked four camps for displaced people in northern Uganda. The presiding judge ruled that since Ongwen is indigent, the reparations will be paid by a trust fund for victims set up by the
court’s member states. Schmitt urged “states, organizations, corporations and private
individuals to support the trust’s funds for victims’ missions and efforts and contribute to its fundraising activities.”
Victims would each receive $812 as a “symbolic award,” while other reparations would come in the form of community-based rehabilitation programmes.
Evidence at Ongwen’s trial established that female civilians captured by the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) were turned into sex slaves and wives for fighters.
Similarly, over 100 women and girls and thousands of children, boys and girls under the age of 15, suffered profound, multifaceted harm as a result of being kidnapped. Many were later subjected to sexual and gender based crimes and/or forced to serve as LRA (Lord’s Resistance Army) soldiers, being kept
in captivity with cruel methods of physical and psychological coercion.”

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