Arusha, April 2, 2003 (FH) - Genocide suspect and former prefect ofCyangugu, Emmanuel Bagambiki ended his chief examination at theInternational Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda on Wednesday by saying that hewas sorry for not being able to save everyone because he was powerlessduring the Rwandan genocide of 1994. Bagambiki is jointly accused with former commander of Karambo military campSamuel Imanishimwe and exMinister for Transport and communication, AndreNtagerura.

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They are accused of being the architects of the genocide inCyangugu prefecture (SouthWest Rwanda). The genocide suspect declared : “I do regret that I was not able to save allpeople, I do send my sorry and regret for all those I could not help becauseI was helpless”The former prefect, who was testifying in his own defence also said that hehoped that what happened in Rwanda in 1994 will never happen again in Rwandaor in any other country. Speaking in an emotional voice, Bagambiki said he had tried his utmost bestto stop the killingsin the town. He added that he and Colonel Innocent Bavugamenshi, thecommander ofthe gendarmerie opposed the genocide. ” We both worked heart and soul inpacifyingthe region and comforting the refugees”, Bagambiki claimed. “If I had not done what I did, I would be in another prison, a prison ofremorse. But nowI am free because my conscience is free”, declared the accused. “I respectfully bow before all the innocent victims regardless of theirsocial or ethnic background or where they come from. I do regret that I wasnot able to save all and I ask for their forgiveness for my lack of power”,Bagambiki said, ending his testimony. He added that abandoning his prefecture at the height of the killings, ashad been suggested by one expert witness, André Guichaoua, would have been acowardly act. The prosecution alleges that more than 100,000 people were killed inCyangugu but an official census by the Rwandan government in Kigaliestimates the number to be less than than 60,000Crossexamination beginsThe prosecutor Mr. Richard Karegyesa of Uganda started crossexaminingBagambiki. Hetold the former prefect that his evidence was fabricated and completelyunreliable. Mr. Karegyesa also asked the accused questions regarding his whereaboutsbefore the genocide in 1994 and about various massacres that took place inthe areas where Bagambiki worked. On one occasion he asked the witness, “Isn't it true that you weretransferred to Cyangugu as a punishment for the events in Bugasera in 1992?”Bagambiki replied that prefects were assigned to their native prefectures ina government decision made at the request of the multi parties. The crossexamination continues tomorrow. The Cyangugu trial is beforeTrial Chamber Three, presided over by Judge George Lloyd Williams of St. Kitts and Nevis, assisted by Judges Yakov Ostrovsky of Russia and PavelDolenc of Slovenia. SV/CE/FH (CY0204e)