Arusha, March 19, 2002 (FH) - The case of two Rwandan former political leaders and a military officer from Cyangugu, on trial for genocide before the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), was on Tuesday afternoon adjourned to allow a defence witness to prepare for giving evidence. The case referred to as the Cyangugu Trial, groups former Transport Minister André Ntagerura, former Cyangugu Prefect Emmanuel Bagambiki and formerCommander of the Military barracks in Cyangugu, Samuel Imanishimwe.

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Prosecution maintains that all three are guilty of massacres of ethnic Tutsis in Cyangugu (south west Rwanda) during the 1994 genocide. They have pleaded not guilty. The trial was adjourned after the testimony of the twelfth defence witness known only as "K6H" for the protection of his identity. Ntagerura's lead counsel Canadian Benoit Henry asked for an adjournment to meet the next witness "DAR", who only arrived in Arusha late Monday night. ICTR's Trial Chamber Three granted the request. Witness K6H, who completed his testimony on Tuesday morning, gave evidence mostly in camera a did the witness before him, dubbed "HOPE" for the protection of his identity. Witness HOPE, who was questioned in his chief testimony by Ntagerura's co-counsel Hamuli Rety of France and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), told the court that "those who are guilty should be punished and those who are innocent should be proclaimed so". He said in cross-questioning by prosecution that he did not believe that Ntagerura was involved in the massacres (in 1994). Ntagerura is alleged to have allowed or authorised the use of government vehicles, specifically buses for the transportation of [Interahamwe] militia, as well as for the transportation of arms and ammunitions to Cyangugu prefecture. But HOPE said that various party supporters only used government vehicles as a means of transport to political meetings in 1992. He said he was unaware ofNtagerura holding meetings calling for the massacre of Tutsis in 1994, as alleged by prosecution witnesses. The Cyangugu Trial started on September 18th, 2000. The prosecution maintains that the crimes committed in Cyangugu stand out in the Rwandan genocide because within 23 days about 100,000 victims had died. Ntagerura's defence team started their case in the first week of March this year. Most of the defence witnesses so far have given the majority of their evidence in closed session. Witness DAR is expected to start testifying on Wednesday morning, before Trial Chamber Three, composed of judges Lloyd George Williams of St. Kittsand Nevis (presiding), Yakov Ostrovsky of Russia and Pavel Dolenc of Slovenia. SW/FH (CY-0319e)