Arusha, March 24, 2003 (FH) - Defense counsels in the socalled Butare trial which groups six genocide suspects, on Monday continue to uncover contradictions between written and oral statements made by the twenty third prosecution witness. Guy Poupart of Canada, cocounsel for Pauline Nyiramasuhuko, former Minister for Family and Women Affairs and Normand Marquis also from Canada, cocounsel for Pauline's son, Arsene Shalom Ntahobali, had at different times given the witness a hard time to elaborate contradictions which arose from her evidence.

1 min 42Approximate reading time

The witness, a Tutsi woman dubbed QY to shield her identity gave four different written statements to the investigators of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) between 1997 and 2000 in which several facts contradicted her oral testimony before the trial chamber. Other coaccused include, two former Prefects of Butare, Sylvain Nsabimana and Alphonse Nteziryayo and two former Mayors in the same prefecture, Joseph Kanyabashi of Ngoma and Elie Ndayambaje of Muganza. " Am I correct in saying non of your four statements to the ICTR investigators, did you mention that you were raped at the prefecture office?" asked counsel Poupart following the witness's answer to the previous questions that she was raped at the prefecture premise. QY alleged that when she and other refugees were interviewed by the investigators, they did not have the courage to account the rape episode but she said "now here before the chamber I can do so. "Other contradictions which she admitted that she did not mentioned in her written testimony include, rape which took place at the Anglican Church Centre (EER), allegations that it was the first time she ever had sex with a man and that investigators confused the name of the accused Pauline's body guard known as Kazungu and the other man Muzungu when they took her written statements. Counsel Poupart who started cross examining witness QY last Thursday concluded his crossquestioning on Monday. "Mr Interpreter tell the counsel that I will not answer this question. I am tired of it. " QY said when the Tanzanian Presiding Judge William Sekule asked the witness to respond to the question asked by counsel Marquis. He wanted to know whether it was the first time for the witness to have sexual relations with a man when she was raped at the EER. Judge Sekule was several times compelled to direct the interpreter to remind witness QY to answer questions from the counsels as they were asked instead of avoiding them or giving unrelated answers. Large part of the afternoon session was held in camera. The trial continues on Tuesday before Trial Chamber 11 presided over by the Tanzanian Judge William Sekule, assisted by Judges Arlette Ramaroson of Madagascar and Winston Churchill Matanzima Maqutu of Lesotho. NI/FH(BT'0324e)