ICC rules militant liable for 2.7m euros for Timbuktu rampage

The Hague: War crimes judges said on Thursday that a Malian militant was liable for 2.7 million euros in personal damages for destroying Timbuktu’s fabled shrines in 2012, as they ordered reparations in a landmark ruling.
The International Criminal Court ordered that the victims of the razing of the fabled west African city’s historic treasures be paid “individual, collective and symbolic” reparations.
But the judges at the Hague-based tribunal also recognised that Ahmad Al Faqi al Mahdi — jailed last September for nine years — was penniless, saying it was now up to the Trust Fund for Victims to decide how the outstanding amount will have to be paid.
The fund was created in 2004 by the ICC’s state parties, aiming to address harms resulting from genocide, crimes of humanity and war crimes.
It implements any reparations ordered by the court — including financial payments — and helps victims. Funding comes from public and private donors as well as court-ordered fines and forfeitures.
The fund now has until February 16 to come up with a plan for how to implement Thursday’s reparations award.
The judges stressed that just because Mahdi had no money, it did not absolve him from paying, saying they “disagreed that Al Mahdi’s indigence has an impact on (the) reparations award.”
Judges further ordered the Malian state and the international community be compensated with a symbolic amount of one euro each for damages suffered. Militants used pickaxes and bulldozers against nine mausoleums and the centuries-old door of the Sidi Yahya mosque, part of a golden age of Islam after over-running northern Mali in 2012. — AFP