International Justice/ICC: Nov-Dec ‘08

IWPR briefs Sudanese journalists on justice issues and expands its trainee network in Congo.

International Justice/ICC: Nov-Dec ‘08

IWPR briefs Sudanese journalists on justice issues and expands its trainee network in Congo.

Saturday, 17 January, 2009
IWPR Africa editor Peter Eichstaedt traveled to Juba in South Sudan and the capital Khartoum to teach trainees how to report on justice issues.

The journalists said that training was particularly necessary at this time, with elections on the horizon. Good journalists are needed in the country, they said, “so that people will understand and debate issues [including] the ICC”.

In November, the project plans to hold a seminar about reporting on crimes of sexual violence in Goma, northeastern DRC. The event had earlier been postponed due to fighting between rebel Tutsi militia leader Laurent Nkunda and the Congolese armed forces.

Participants in the Sudanese training sessions said they learned a great deal.

One trainee from The Citizen newspaper in Juba said the workshop “taught me how to be an analytical writer [and to] dig deeply into stories”.

Another trainee from the Juba Post said the session “brought Sudanese journalists together to participate in [upholding their ethics in] journalism”.

A third said the event had taught him a lot about impartiality and “being careful about where I get information about the ICC from”.

Despite the fighting in eastern Congo, Face a la Justice producer and IWPR international justice director Stephanie Wolters and international justice reporter Lisa Clifford visited Bunia, Goma and Bukavu to meet IWPR trainees and liaise with radio stations interested in broadcasting Face a la Justice.

They recruited new trainees Anaurite Unyuthi and Richard Pituwa from the radio station Canal Revelation, and in Goma met regular existing ones, including Charles Ntiricya and Jacques Kahorha.

Meanwhile, IWPR trainees traveled to the front line to interview refugees and militia leaders on their views on justice, particularly the ICC’s failure to arrest indictee Bosco Ntaganda, Nkunda’s deputy.

Also Congolese journalist Ewing Amadi Salumu, the Swahili presenter of Face a la Justice, came to The Hague for an internship.

Ewing conducted interviews with the deputy prosecutor of the ICC, Fatou Bensouda, as well as head of the defence support section Xavier-Jean Kieta.

He also interviewed Andre Laperriere, head of the ICC’s trust fund for victims, and defence lawyer Aime Kilolo-Musamba, who is representing former Congolese vice-president Jean-Pierre Bemba, currently on trial at the ICC.

He said that these interviews increased his awareness of the court’s work. “With Fatou Bensouda, the deputy prosecutor, I’ve learnt that not only Congolese are indicted by the ICC – as many people usually say in DRC – but there are other investigations around the worlds in other countries.

“They are doing all they can to bring justice and [to support] justice.”

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