08/28/2011 10:00 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Angelina Jolie Attends Congo Warlord Trial In Hague (VIDEO)

A Congolese warlord accused of recruiting children as young as 9 to fight was brought to trial this week by the International Criminal Court. UN Ambassador Angelina Jolie told was there to support the abused children for whom justice is long overdue, according to the Associated Press.

“I’m not attending particularly as a UN Ambassador,” Jolie told the news outlet. “I’m attending just as a concerned citizen of the world who cares about children.”

Witnesses said child recruits were taught combat tactics and were forced to fight during the Democratic Republic of Congo's 1998-2003 conflict, Reuters reports. Commanders raped young girls and forced them to serve as sex slaves.

“I was speaking with many of the men here today who were in fact child soldiers and they say it’s hard for them to even imagine that they’re still asking the international community to enforce this ban,” Jolie told the Associated Press. “It seems like something we shouldn’t be asking for. It seems so obvious that it is so inhumane. It is so unfair.”

A verdict is expected early next year, according to Reuters.