Arusha, June 27, 2014 (FH) – A former Congolese militia leader sentenced to 12 years in jail by the International Criminal Court (ICC) has decided not to appeal. Meanwhile, youth leaders of French political parties were this week in Kigali to commemorate the anti-Tutsi genocide.

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RWANDA/FRANCE Young French politicians commemorate Rwandan genocide: Several leaders of French political party youth wings were this week in the Rwandan capital Kigali to commemorate the 1994 genocide, in which France is accused of having played a part. The delegation, led by the European Anti-Racist Movement (EGAM), said it wanted to “thus contribute to restoring the honour of France and the dignity of the victims”, according to an EGAM communiqué.

ICC/KATANGAGermain Katanga and prosecution will not appeal: Former Congolese militia leader Germain Katanga said Wednesday he would not appeal his 12-year prison sentence imposed by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for complicity in destruction of a village in northeast Democratic Republic of Congo in February 2003. Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda subsequently announced she would not appeal either. Katanga’s conviction thus becomes the first ICC conviction to be confirmed. On March 7, Katanga was found guilty of complicity in war crimes and crimes against humanity  committed on February 24, 2003 in the village of Bogoro, in the eastern Ituri region of his country. The sentence was handed down on May 23.

NEXT WEEK ICC: Appeals judgment in case of Rwandan general: Monday afternoon sees the much awaited appeals judgment of former Rwandan army boss General Augustin Bizimungu before the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR). Bizimungu was sentenced to 30 years in jail by the lower court. The judgment comes as, in Rwanda, ICTR Appeals Court President Theodor Meron is being increasingly accused of acquitting former high-ranking civilian and military figures sentenced by the lower courts, or considerably reducing their sentences.