U.S. offers $5 million bounty for war crimes suspects
WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration on Wednesday offered up to $5 million in rewards for information leading to the capture of Lord’s Resistance Army chief Joseph Kony, two of his top aides and a Rwandan rebel leader suspected of crimes against humanity.
The bounties are being offered by the State Department under a provision in the War Crimes Rewards Program authored by Secretary of State John Kerry when he was a senator and signed into law by President Barack Obama in January. That provision expanded the scope of the program that had previously allowed for rewards to be offered for war crimes suspects wanted only by international criminal tribunals for Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia.
It now covers those wanted by the International Criminal Court and other international tribunals, such as those envisioned for the Democratic Republic of Congo and potentially Syria
Kony is accused of ordering widespread atrocities during a brutal campaign for power that originated in Uganda in the 1980s and is wanted by the International Criminal Court. He is now believed to be hiding in the Central African Republic where an international manhunt for him led by African troops has been suspended due to lack of cooperation from that country’s new leaders, who overthrew the government last month.
Other than Kony, the rewards apply to his lieutenants, Okot Odhiambo and Dominic Ongwen, as well as the leader of the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda, Sylvestre Mudacumura.
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