[JURIST] The International Criminal Court (ICC) [official website] said Wednesday that it is still seeking the arrest [press release] of Ugandan rebel leader and war crimes suspect Joseph Kony [BBC profile] and his deputies, four years after warrants for the men were issued by the court. Kony, leader of the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) [BBC backgrounder], is wanted [warrant, PDF; case materials] by the ICC on 33 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity including murder, rape, sexual enslavement, and conscription of children. The court said that it "remains hopeful" that it will still apprehend the men with the help of the DR Congo, Ugandan, and Sudanese governments and through efforts [JURIST reports] by the UN Mission to the DR Congo [official website]. Kony has insisted that he his not guilty [JURIST report] of the atrocities attributed to him, describing himself as a "freedom fighter" rather than a criminal.
Warrants for the men were made public [JURIST report] in October 2005, after being the first to be issued by the court in July of that year. The ICC has repeatedly called for the arrest of the men, and has not conceded to Ugandan requests that the charges be dropped [JURIST reports] as part of a peace deal with the LRA. In May 2008, Uganda created the High Court of Uganda [JURIST report] to try LRA rebels, but the ICC warrants remain in effect [JURIST report].