Arusha, October 25, 2001 (FH) - Genocide suspect and medical doctor Gerard Ntakirutimana participated in a meeting to evaluate progress of the killing of Tutsis at the peak of the 1994 genocide in Rwanda, a witness told the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) on Thursday. Gerard Ntakirutimana is being jointly tried with his father, Seventh Day Adventist pastor Elizaphan Ntakirutimana.

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At the time of the genocide, Elizaphan was pastor of the Seventh Day Adventist church at Mugonero in Kibuye, western Rwanda. Gerard was a doctor at the infirmary which lay in the same complex. The two are charged with five counts of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. An estimated 800,000 Tutsis and politically moderate Hutus were killed during the 1994 genocide. Protected witness 'UU' told the court that the meeting took place at the Kibuye prefectural offices around June 1994. "Kayishema (then prefect of Kibuye, sentenced to life in prison by the ICTR) told the meeting that there were many Tutsis who were still alive and had to be killed," UU told the court. According to the witness, Gerard told the meeting that "the problem they were facing was that they did not have enough weapons". Kayishema reportedly designated former information minister Eliezer Niyitegeka and Obed Ruzindana to find weapons immediately and distribute them. UU told the court that he had personally attended the meeting. Kibuye businessman Ruzindana was tried before the ICTR with Kayishema and sentenced to 25 years in prison. Niyitegeka is in Tribunal custody awaiting trial. UU is the thirteenth prosecution witness. He will continue testifying on Monday. Prosecutor Charles Phillips of Nigeria and the UK told the court that the prosecution expected to bring only two or three more witnesses, and was likely to wrap its case up next week. The case is before Trial Chamber One of the ICTR, composed of judges Erik Mose of Norway (presiding), Navanethem Pillay of South Africa and Andrésia Vaz of Senegal. GG/JC/PHD/FH (NK1025e)