Statement Attributable to the Spokesman for the Secretary-General on the Judgement of the International Criminal Court in the case of Ahmad Al Faqi Al Mahdi

The Secretary-General welcomes the Judgement delivered today by the International Criminal Court (ICC) in the case of The Prosecutor v. Ahmad Al Faqi Al Mahdi, in which Mr Al Mahdi was found guilty as a co-perpetrator of the war crime of intentionally directing attacks against religious and historic buildings in Timbuktu, Mali, in June and July 2012.
The Secretary-General notes that this ICC Judgment, the first in a case of destruction of cultural heritage, represents an important step forward in the fight against impunity in Mali. He further notes that the path to healing wounds between communities in the country must be premised in greater accountability, justice and the Agreement on Peace and Reconciliation in Mali.
The Secretary-General expresses his appreciation for the efforts undertaken by UNESCO and the UN Stabilization Mission in Mali, MINUSMA, in support of national authorities, to protect and reconstruct Mali’s heritage and to preserve cultural diversity in the country.

New York, 27 September 2016