The International Court of Justice (ICJ), the UN's highest legal body, has started two weeks of hearings to hear a 1999 complaint filed by the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) accusing Uganda of invading its territory and massacring Congolese civilians.The DRC accuses Uganda of violating its territorial sovereignty, violating international humanitarian law and committing massive human rights violations. It is demanding reparations for destruction and looting allegedly carried out by Ugandan troops and "the restitution of national property and resources appropriated for the benefit of Uganda.
"Armed Activities on the Territory of the Congo
(Democratic Republic of the Congo v. Uganda)
The Court will hold public hearings from 11 to 29 April 2005
THE HAGUE, 6 December 2004. The International Court of Justice (ICJ), principal judicial organ of the United Nations, will hold public hearings in the case concerning Armed Activities on the Territory of the Congo (Democratic Republic of the Congo v. Uganda) from Monday 11 to Friday 29 April 2005 at the Peace Palace in The Hague, seat of the Court.
The precise schedule for those hearings will be announced later.
History of the proceedings
On 23 June 1999 the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) filed in the Registry of the Court an Application instituting proceedings against Uganda for “acts of armed aggression perpetrated in flagrant violation of the United Nations Charter and of the Charter of the OAU”.
In its Application, the DRC contended that “such armed aggression . . . [had] involved inter alia violation of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the [DRC], violations of international humanitarian law and massive human rights violations”. The DRC sought “to secure the cessation of the acts of aggression directed against it, which constitute a serious threat to peace and security in central Africa in general and in the Great Lakes region in particular”; it also sought “compensation from Uganda in respect of all acts of looting, destruction, removal of property and persons and other unlawful acts attributable to [it], in respect of which the [DRC] reserves the right to determine at a later date the precise amount of the damage suffered, in addition to its claim for the restitution of all property removed”.
Read the drama
Dictator Yoweri Museveni has consistently denied the claims and said "uganda only acted to protect national security".