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The trial of Kuvira was the proceeding in which the former leader of the Earth Empire, Kuvira, was sentenced to house arrest at the Beifong estate in Zaofu for her crimes against peace in both the Earth Kingdom and the United Republic of Nations.[2]

History

Prelude

After the Earth Kingdom collapsed in 171 AG, Kuvira began attempting to unite the nation under the flag of the Earth Empire. After uniting ninety percent of the city-states under her banner and believing that the blame for the disarray of the nation rested with the rule of unsuited monarchs, Kuvira deposed Earth King Wu in 174 AG and transformed the kingdom into the Earth Empire under her leadership. Conquering most of the Earth Kingdom, she also invaded Republic City in the same year, a mission that was thwarted by Avatar Korra and her allies. The Great Uniter, surrendered and ordered her armed forces to stand down, which resulted in her arrest. The seat of power of the Earth Kingdom was officially returned to Wu and the Earth Empire was reportedly dissolved.[3]

The trial

In 174 AG, three months after her surrender, Kuvira was brought before a special tribunal in Republic City by the executive order of President Zhu Li Moon to stand trial. She stood accused of crimes against peace, including: refusing to turn over emergency powers granted by former President Raiko and King Wu, numerous wars of aggression throughout the Earth Kingdoms states, presiding over inhuman prison camps, invading the United Republic, and the usage of spirit energy as a weapon of mass destruction.

Kuvira on trial

Kuvira was accused for multiple crimes against peace committed during her time as leader of the Earth Empire.

With the president present in the courtroom, as well as the Earth King, Iknik Blackstone Varrick, Avatar Korra and her team, the Beifong family, and former president Raiko, Kuvira apologized for the harm she caused to the people of the Earth Kingdom and Republic City, although she considered the tribunal was too eagerly listing and overemphasizing her violations while ignoring her alleged achievements, such as bringing order to the kingdom after the fall of Earth Queen Hou-Ting and dragging an ancient culture out of the dark ages and modernizing it. She claimed to have acted for the greater good of the Earth Kingdom and its citizens and, therefore, decided to plead not guilty.

While being dragged away from the courtroom by two White Lotus sentries, the accused was confronted at the exit by an infuriated Suyin Beifong, who pointed out how she had attacked their home and attempted to assassinate Baatar Jr. However, Kuvira insisted on the fact that she had apologized numerous times, at which her adoptive mother responded that it was not enough and urged her to take responsibility for her actions.[2]

Later, Kuvira was visited in her cell room by Korra in order to request her help to deal with Commander Guan, the former head of the Earth Empire's southern forces who had recently started to lead an armed holdout following her surrender and planned to sabotage the Earth Kingdom's new democratic election in the State of Gaoling. After the Avatar consulted with her team, she decided to take Kuvira's offer to be brought to Guan and reason with him and convince him to concede defeat. Therefore, President Zhu Li Moon signed the papers for Kuvira's temporary release.[2]

Kuvira pleads guilty

Much to the audience's surprise, Kuvira pled guilty during her trial before the tribunal of the United Republic of Nations.

After Team Avatar and Kuvira managed to stop Commander Guan, Dr. Sheng and their followers,[1] uncovering a brainwashing conspiracy to influence Gaoling's election,[4] the Great Uniter was brought back to the court. The tribunal called Varrick as a witness who, under oath, testified that she had threatened to kill him after he refused to keep working on developing spirit energy technology. However, before the tribunal could finish questioning Varrick, Kuvira admitted to having refused to turn over emergency powers and taking over the Earth Kingdom because it was what she believed was best for everyone. She also recognized that, even though she partially ignored the living conditions in the re-education camps, she should have been fully aware of it. She continued by saying that she hoped that, by taking full responsibility for her actions, she could begin to heal some of the pain caused, and thus decided to plead guilty.

Suyin Beifong later spoke with President Moon and the Republic City tribunal so that, due to Kuvira's show of remorse and her help in ending the Earth Empire and defeating Guan, she and Baatar Jr. would be released into Su's custody, being sentenced to house arrest at the Beifong estate in Zaofu.[1]

Aftermath

After Kuvira's final plea, she was met outside the courtroom by Avatar Korra and her friends, who manifested their respect for her speech and redemption. The Metal Clan soon joined them, allowing Kuvira and Suyin to reconcile and forgive each other for their past mistakes. The head of the clan then informed her adoptive daughter about the tribunal's verdict, which Kuvira calmly understood. The decision was kindly accepted among the younger members, including Opal, who stated that, even though Kuvira was not born a Beifong, she would always be a part of the family.[1]

References

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