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Thomas Lubanga

Thomas Lubanga




Thomas Lubanga Dyilo was born on December 29, 1960, in Djiba, Ituri Province, Democratic Republic of the Congo. He belonged to the Hema-Gegere ethnic group. Lubanga pursued his education at the University of Kisangani, where he earned a degree in psychology. He was married and had seven children.

Lubanga became deeply involved in the Ituri conflict (1999–2007) during the Second Congo War. He played a significant role as a military commander and "minister of defence" in the pro-Uganda Congolese Rally for Democracy-Liberation Movement (RCD-ML). In July 2001, he founded the Union of Congolese Patriots (UPC), becoming its president in September 2002. Under his leadership, the UPC became a major actor in the conflict, committing numerous atrocities including ethnic massacres, murder, torture, rape, mutilation, and forcibly conscripting child soldiers.

In March 2004, the Congolese government authorized the International Criminal Court (ICC) to investigate and prosecute crimes within its jurisdiction. Lubanga was the first person arrested under an ICC arrest warrant on March 17, 2006. He was charged with the war crime of conscripting and enlisting children under the age of fifteen years and using them to participate actively in hostilities.

After a trial that began on January 26, 2009, Lubanga was found guilty on March 14, 2012, of abducting and enlisting children under the age of 15 to fight in the conflict. He was sentenced to 14 years in prison by the ICC on July 10, 2012. Despite attempts to secure early release, his sentence was upheld, and he served his time until his release in March 2020.

Throughout his trial, Lubanga's case faced several controversies, including issues regarding the disclosure of evidence, the narrow scope of charges against him, and concerns about the fairness of the trial process.


Time of Birth:

Place of Birth: Djiba, DR Congo

Long: 19.47°E

Lat: 2.67°N

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Date of Birth: December 29, 1960

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