August 12, 2020

Al Hassan trial opens at International Criminal Court

On 14 July 2020, the trial in the case The Prosecutor v. Al Hassan Ag Abdoul Aziz Ag Mohamed Ag Mahmoud opened before Trial Chamber X of the International Criminal Court (ICC) for crimes against humanity and war crimes allegedly committed in Timbuktu (Mali). Trial Chamber X is composed of Judge Antoine Kesia-Mbe Mindua, Presiding Judge, Judge Tomoko Akane and Judge Kimberly Prost.

The trial’s opening started with the reading of the charges against Mr Al Hassan. The Chamber was satisfied that the accused understood the nature of the charges. The accused decided not to plead guilty or non-guilty to the charges at this stage of the trial. 

The Court’s Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda and Senior Trial Lawyer Gilles Dutertre took the floor for opening statements. The hearings will continue tomorrow 15 July 2020, with the end of the Prosecution’s opening statement. 

The trial is scheduled to resume on 25 August 2020, when the Prosecution will begin to present its evidence and call its witnesses before the judges. At their requests, the Legal Representatives of Victims and the Defence will make their opening statements at the beginning of the presentation of their evidence, once the Prosecution has concluded the presentation of its case.

Due to the current situation linked to Covid-19, the public gallery was open to a limited number of representatives of the media, the diplomatic community, and the public.  

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