Arusha, February 26, 2001(FH) - A protected witness told the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) on Monday that genocide suspect Jean-Bosco Barayawiza divorced his wife after learning that she was Tutsi. The eighth prosecution witness, dubbed ABE to protect his identity, said that when Barayagwiza decided to finish with his wife, the couple already had three children.

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Barayagwiza’s lawyer Giacomo Caldarera then asked the witness whether the accused had been married without knowing his wife’s ethnic group. "I think Barayagwiza would be in the best position to answer that," ABE replied. Barayagwiza has been boycotting the trial since it started on October 23rd, and ordered his lawyers to do the same. Caldarera is defending him against his will. The accused claims that the trial will not be fair, because the ICTR is manipulated by the current Rwandan government. ABE accused Barayagwiza of making anti-Tutsi speeches at a meeting of his (Barayagwiza’s) CDR party in his home commune of Mutara (Gisenyi prefecture, northwest Rwanda). "He said there should be no relations between Hutus and Tutsis, that there should be no marriages between the two ethnic groups," the witness told the court. ABE said he was a Tutsi who had at one time been imprisoned for supporting the pro-Tutsi Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF former Tutsi guerilla army, now in power in Kigali). Barayagwiza is a former politician and board member of "hate radio" Radio-Télévision Libre des Mille Collines (RTLM). He is jointly accused with former RTLM director Ferdinand Nahimana and former editor of the Kangura newspaper Hassan Ngeze, in what has been called the media trial. The three are charged with several counts of genocide, public incitement to commit genocide, complicity in genocide and crimes against humanity. Witness ’ABE’ told the court that RTLM radio broadcast anti-Tutsi messages and called upon all "true Hutus" to rise against the Tutsi enemy. ’ABE’ went on to say that he had seen the president of MRND (the then ruling party), Matthew Ngirumpatse, introduce Nahimana to a big crowd in a Kigali stadium as the director of "RTLM, the radio of the people, unlike Radio Rwanda (the national radio) which is a tool of RPF-Inkotanyi". The witness said Radio Rwanda was denounced as pro-RPF because its director was a member of MDR, an opposition party. The witness also identified and commented on three issues of Kangura newspaper given to him by prosecutor Egbe. One of the issues contained the so-called “Hutu Ten Commandments”. ABE said the commandments, along with other articles by Kangura, had played a big part in dividing the Hutu and Tutsi communities. Another issue of Kangura brought before the witness contained a cartoon of former Rwandan Prime Minister Agathe Uwilingiyimana and of former MDR opposition party president Faustin Twagiramungu. The two were both members of MDR. The witness said Kangura also aimed at denigrating leaders of opposition parties. Witness ’ABE’ is the eighth of forty witnesses scheduled to testify for the prosecution. The prosecution earlier said that it would be closing its case in July. The Trial is being heard by Trial Chamber One of the ICTR, composed of Judges Navanethem Pillay of South Africa (presiding), Erik Mose of Norway and Asoka de Zoysa Gunawardana of Sri Lanka. GG/JC/PHD/FH (ME_0226f)