Arusha, February 7, 2001(FH) A witness told the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) on Wednesday that members of his family were killed at the instigation of the RTLM radio station. The witness, dubbed FS to protect his identity, is the fifth prosecution witness in the trial of three genocide suspects linked to media which allegedly incited Hutus to kill Tutsis during the 1994 genocide in Rwanda.

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They are Ferdinand Nahimana, former director of RTLM, Jean-BoscoBarayagwiza, former politician and RTLM founder member, and Hassan Ngeze, former editor of the newspaper Kangura. FS said that his older brother’s family had been decimated during the genocide after their names were broadcast on RTLM. The witness said his brother, sister-in-law and their seven children had all been murdered. The prosecution says that Tutsis and other people were killed or suffered grave physical or mental harm because they were persecuted by RTLM. Witness FS said that before the genocide Kangura had also “pointed the finger” at people who were subsequently killed. Kangura was not published between April and July 1994, when up to one million Tutsis and moderate Hutus were killed. FS, a 40-year-old Tutsi survivor from Gisenyi (northwest Rwanda) told the court that the radio was more of a killer than the machetes. He said that RTLM was used to broadcast the ideas of “Hutu power” [Hutu extremism]. The witness added that Nahimana, Barayagwiza and a rich businessman, Félicien Kabuga (still sought by the ICTR), had called for financial support for RTLM during a meeting of former presidential party MRND in 1993. They had also invited leaders from other parties that supported “Hutu Power”, the witness told the court. He said Ngeze and other journalists from RTLM were also present at that meeting. AT/JC/FH (ME_0207g)