Wednesday, August 04, 2004

South Africa/Zimbabwe: "mercenaries" lose appeal

The families of the 69 South African men being held in a Zimbabwe prison on charges of being mercenaries, sued the South African government to get it to extradite the men to South Africa and try them there. The families lost the first time around ... and the appeal decision, delivered today, did not go their way either.
[South African] Chief Justice Arthur Chaskalson said on Wednesday the court was divided on some of the issues raised, but its 10 judges were united in the view that the claim as formulated by the men demanding their rights under the South African Constitution was misconceived.

[...] The majority decision, written by Chaskalson, confirmed the order made by Transvaal Judge President Bernard Ngoepe in June that the government cannot be compelled to demand the return of the men to South Africa or be forced to ensure the men receive fair trials and are detained under internationally acceptable conditions.

[...] In the majority judgement, Chaskalson also chided the men's lawyers for trying to rush the process through the media. (source)
Previous posts ...
  • Zimbabwe/Eqatorial Guinea: update on the mercenaries
  • Zimbabwe: 67 "mercenaries" plead guilty to some charges
  • Zimbabwe: "mercenary" leader pleads guilty to some charges