International court orders $10m compensation to former Congolese child soldiers

The International Criminal Court (ICC) on Friday ordered that Congolese warlord Thomas Lubanga is liable to pay $10 million to former child soldiers he forcibly conscripted.

Lubanga’s Union of Congolese Patriots had recruited these children during the 2002-03 conflict in the Ituri region in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.

Convicted of the crime in 2012, he has been serving a 14-year sentence at a Congolese prison.

The court said that Lubanga does not have the money to pay the compensation, and asked the Trust Fund for Victims, funded by ICC member donations, to pay a part of the compensation and to reach out to the Congolese government to contribute money.

While $3.4 million of this is to be paid to 427 victims recognized by the court, the rest, $6.6 million, is to be paid to “hundreds or even thousands of additional victims” who have yet to come forward.

The money will be used for psychological support, job training and education to the victims.

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