Today, the International Criminal Court (ICC) set the date for the commencement of the trial in the case Abdallah Banda Abakaer Nourain and Saleh Mohammed Jerbo Jamus for 5 May 2014. The delay was deemed necessary to allow the adoption of measures meant to ensure that trial proceedings will not be interrupted, including witness protection and training for Zaghawa interpreters.
The case against Abdallah Banda and Saleh Jerbo concerns crimes which were allegedly committed during an attack led by the two accused and directed against the compound of the African Union Mission in Sudan at Haskanita on the evening of 29 September 2007. Charges of war crimes were confirmed by the Pre-Trial Chamber in March 2011. The Pre-Trial Judges established that there were substantial grounds to believe that MM. Banda and Jerbo are criminally responsible as co-perpetrators for three war crimes, namely violence to life, intentionally directing attacks against personnel, installations, material, units and vehicles involved in a peacekeeping mission; and pillaging.
Both accused are not subject to arrest warrants and continue to be bound by the conditions set in the summonses to appear issued by the ICC. Abdallah Banda and Saleh Jerbo will be the first accused to be tried in the situation in Darfur. The situation was referred to the ICC by United Nations Security Council on 31 March 2005.