Arusha, February 24, 2004 (FH) - Trial Chamber Two of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) was on Tuesday compelled to adjourn the trial of four former Rwandan Ministers to allow the defence team to get copies of transcripts before cross-examining the sixteenth prosecution witness. Only the lead counsel for one of the accused managed to cross-examine the witness code-named DY.

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The lead counsel for Casimir Bizimungu, Michelyne Chénard St-Laurent, had completed her short cross-examination, when the other defence attorneys told the chamber they could not proceed without the transcripts of the witness's chief examination. The witness, a former government soldier, had been examined by the prosecution since Thursday last week. The chamber adjourned the trial and directed the registry to make the transcripts available to the defence teams as soon as possible to enable them prepare their cross-examination. The cross-examination of DY will continue on Wednesday morning. Government Two trial groups together Casimir Bizimungu, former minister for health, Justin Mugenzi, former minister for Commerce, Prosper Mugiraneza,former minister of civil service and Jerome Bicamumpaka, former minister of foreign affairs They have all pleaded not guilty to six counts of genocide and crimes against humanity. Government II Trial is before Trial Chamber Two where Judge Asoka de Zoyza Gunawardana (Sri Lanka) is presiding assisted by judges Lee Muthoga (Kenya) and Khalida Rashid Khan (Pakistan)PJ/CE/FH (GVII'0224e)