Arusha, December 8, 2003 (FH) A prosecution witness in the so-called Government I trial that groups four former senior government officials, Monday told the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) that she had witnessed one of the accused, André Rwamakuba, ordering that all Tutsis who had taken refuge at Butare prefecture (southern Rwanda) headquarters be killed. The witness code-named TM to protect her identity, told the chamber during her examination in chief that she had heard with her own ears Rwamakuba telling the prefect, Sylvain Nsabimana, to get rid of the refugees.

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All people who have taken refuge here are Tutsis and must be killed. No Tutsis should be spared, she had allegedly heard Rwamakuba ordering the prefect. Nsabimana is also on trial at the ICTR in what is known as the Butare trial. The "Government I" trial groups together the president of the former ruling party, the MRND, Matthieu Ngirumpatse, his vice president Edouard Karemera, the Secretary general of MRND, Joseph Nzirorera as well as Andre Rwamakuba. A former minister of primary and secondary education, André Rwamakuba has boycotted the trial ever since it started 27th of November, 2003. He alleges that his case is manipulated by the prosecutor. The witness's testimony collaborated that of earlier witnesses who claimed that Rwamakuba had played a part in the massacres at Butare university hospital. She claimed that she saw the accused holding a list with Tutsis names. He went around the hospital asking everyone for their identity cards. Tutsis in bed were dragged out of their beds and taken away said TM. On one occasion I saw Rwamakuba take the clutches of a man who had his leg in a plaster and beat him with the clutches before tearing his Identity card, she said, adding that Rwamakuba then told the people who had been rounded up and loaded into a lorry to look around them and experience the world for the last time. During cross-examination by the defense counsel for Rwamakuba, David Hooper of the United Kingdom, TM denied having been asked by investigators about the accused. On the alleged people in uniform she claimed to have seen accompanying the accused, the witness clarified that they wore uniform similar to that of Interahamwe. I saw Dr. Gatera and Rwamakuba in front of the pediatric department and they were escorted by men in uniform. Hooper had maintained that it was a case of mistaken identity, pointing out that the witness had confessed to the prosecutor that she would be unable to recognize Rwamakuba because she had only seen the accused three or four times in her life. The trial is taking place in Trial Chamber Three of the ICTR which is composed of Judge Andrésia Vaz, (Senegal, presiding) who is assisted by two ad litem (not permanent) judges, Flavia Lattanzi from Italy and Florence Rita Arrey from Cameroon. SV/KN/AT/FH (GOVI'1208e)