Skip to main content
You have permission to edit this article.
Edit
ICC judges cut Muslim radical's sentence in Timbuktu case
0 Comments
AP

ICC judges cut Muslim radical's sentence in Timbuktu case

  • 0

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — International Criminal Court appeals judges have cut by two years the sentence of an Islamic radical who pleaded guilty to overseeing the destruction of historic mausoleums in the Malian desert city of Timbuktu, the court announced Thursday.

Ahmad Al Faqi Al Mahdi, a former teacher, was sentenced to nine years in 2016 for the war crime of intentionally attacking buildings of a religious and historical character. He pleaded guilty and expressed remorse for his role in the destruction of nine mausoleums and a mosque door by pickax-wielding rebels in June and July of 2012.

He is now set to complete his sentence on Sept. 18, 2022.

In a heavily redacted decision, the panel of judges cited as a reason for cutting his sentence Al Mahdi's continued cooperation with prosecutors at the court after his conviction.

Mali had opposed any reduction, arguing that “the people of Mali as a whole and the people of Timbuktu have not fully healed from the wounds caused by the misdeeds” he committed, according to court papers.

Al Mahdi's conviction was the first at the global court for destruction of religious buildings or historic monuments, and the first guilty verdict delivered against a Muslim extremist.

Al-Qaida-linked rebels occupied the fabled Saharan city of Timbuktu in 2012 and enforced a strict interpretation of Islamic law under which they destroyed the historic mud-brick tombs they considered idolatrous. Al Mahdi was leader of one of the “morality brigades” set up by Timbuktu’s new rulers.

ICC prosecutors said Al Mahdi was a member of Ansar Eddine, an Islamic extremist group with links to al-Qaida that held power in northern Mali in 2012. The militants were driven out after nearly a year by French forces, which arrested Al Mahdi in 2014 in neighboring Niger.

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

0 Comments

Locations

Be the first to know

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

Related to this story

Most Popular

  • Updated

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — Hours after being tapped as Sweden’s first female prime minister, Magdalena Andersson resigned Wednesday after suffering a budget defeat in parliament and her coalition partner the Greens left the two-party minority government.

  • Updated

BERLIN (AP) — Austria's chancellor on Thursday stepped up threats of lockdown measures for unvaccinated people, as new coronavirus cases in the Alpine nation are soaring. The country's worst-affected province said it plans to take that step next week.

  • Updated

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Pop star Justin Bieber is facing growing calls to cancel his concert in Saudi Arabia next month as the fiancee of slain Saudi critic Jamal Khashoggi joined a chorus of voices on Sunday urging him not to perform at the kingdom's Formula One race.

  • Updated

ZRENJANIN, Serbia (AP) — They are shivering in barracks without heat, going hungry and have no money. They say their passports have been taken by their Chinese employer and that they are now stuck in a grim plainland in Serbia with no help from local authorities.

Get up-to-the-minute news sent straight to your device.

Topics

Breaking News

News Alert