Former Chad President to Go on Trial for War Crimes in July

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Former Chadian President Hissene Habre will face war crimes charges in July in the first trial against a head of state at a tribunal created by the African Union.

The AU will ensure that the trial is conducted in a way that meets international standards, Vincent Nmehielle, legal counsel for the organization, told reporters in Johannesburg.

Habre, who is detained in Senegal, ruled landlocked oil producer Chad, which shares borders with six north and central African nations, for eight years to 1990. He’s accused of the deaths of as many as 40,000 people and of using systematic torture, charges he denies.

The trial is expected to last seven months and will cost 8.5 million euros ($9.6 million), Abdou Khadre Lo, head of the outreach program for the AU’s tribunal, told reporters. Chad will contribute 35 percent of the cost, while the AU will donate 9 percent, he said.

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