ICC Unseals Arrest Warrant for Former Central African Republic Official

The International Criminal Court unsealed an arrest warrant Thursday for a former Central African Republic government minister who is accused of war crimes and crimes against humanity.

The suspect, Mahamat Nouradine Adam, is accused of committing crimes during his position as the country’s Minister of Security between March 31 and August 22 in 2013. These violations included alleged “acts of savagery” at detention centers in the capital of Bangui.

Prosecutors say Adam was involved in torture, persecution, enforced disappearances and cruel treatment of prisoners at these detention centers.

The warrant, which was sealed in 2019, was reviewed by an ICC judge along with evidence gathered by the prosecution. After reviewing the evidence, the judge said the warrant is “sufficient to establish reasonable grounds to believe that Adam bears individual criminal responsibility for the crimes.”

Adam was part of the government in the Central African Republic when the largely Muslim Seleka group seized power and forced President Francois Bozize to step down from office in 2013.

ICC prosecutors say Adam had a prominent role in the group and was even “considered as the person with the most power in the Seleka,” even more power than Bozize’s successor, Michel Djotodia.

The released warrant said the United Nations has placed a travel ban on Adam, but said he is believed to be moving from country to country within the region.

The ICC has placed other alleged offenders from the C.A.R.’s unrest on trial, including an alleged Seleka commander and two commanders of the anti-Balaka forces that opposed the Seleka.

Source: Voice of America