Arusha, April 11, 2001 (FH) - The trial of three genocide suspects linked to "hate media" in Rwanda was on Wednesday adjourned to April 23rd before the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR). Being tried in the case are former director of Radio-Télévision Libre des Milles Collines (RTLM) Ferdinand Nahimana, former director of political affairs at Rwanda's foreign ministry and RTLM board member Jean-Bosco Barayagwiza, and former editor of the Kangura newspaper Hassan Ngeze.

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They face charges of genocide, direct and public incitement to commit genocide and crimes against humanity. All three have pleaded not guilty. The case was adjourned after the testimony of the sixteenth prosecution witness, dubbed "GO" to protect his identity. Witness GO was an official in the Information Ministry of the former Rwandan government. He has not yet been cross-examined by defence counsel. The prosecution alleges that RTLM and Kangura were used to fuel the 1994 genocide in Rwanda. Prosecutors have said they expect to bring about 40 witnesses and to finish presenting their evidence in July. Barayagwiza has been boycotting the trial since it began on October 23rd, 2000. He says the ICTR is manipulated by the current Rwandan government and that the trial will not be fair. The case is before 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. Prior to the adjournment, Ngeze told the court that he no longer had confidence in his lawyers, John Floyd of the US and René Martel of Canada. He said that with the help of friends he was now able to pay new counsel, whereas he had previously claimed indigence. Judge Pillay told the defendant that he should discuss the matter with the ICTR Registry. SW/JC/PHD/FH (ME0411E)