Arusha, February 6, 2004 (FH) – A witness in the military trial involving the former chief of Cabinet in the Ministry of Defense, Colonel Theoneste Bagosora and three other senior military officials declared on Friday before the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) that the army was involved in killings. The witness named DCB to protect his identity explained that people were killed in Remera, Rubilizi and Kimihurura (in and around Kigali) by the army.

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He said that the paracommando batallion and other units such as the reconnaissance battalion and the presidential guard were also involved. “ People were killed by members of the FAR and the presidential guard at Kimihurura, IFAK (The institute of technology in Kigali), and at the Salesian brothers technical school,” he stated. The 39th witness added that he had received information concerning the assassination of the prime minister. “Agathe Uwingiyimana was killed in her house by members of the reconnaissance battalion and the presidential guard," he said. DCB told the court that other senior government officials were killed on the 7th of April 1994. He said, “I received information that persons were murdered; Joseph Kavaruganda (president of the constitutional court), Landoald Ndasingwa (the minister of Social Affairs), Félicien Ngango (who was supposed to be the president of the transitional National Assembly) and Frédéric Nzamurambaho (minister of Agriculture) were killed. ”Asked why they were killed, he replied, “it was being said that members of the opposition were allies of the RPF and RPF was waging a war. ”Earlier the witness had said that he witnessed five dead bodies which had been shot near the entrance of the presidential guards headquarters in Kimihurura. “Among those bodies was the body of the information Minister Mr. Faustin Rucogoza,” he said. The witness who worked in the presidential guards headquarters also described how, afterwards, he saw colonel Bagosora, dressed in military attire, entering the camp in a jeep heading towards the commander's office. General Dallaire had testified that Bagosora was present at a meeting at the military headquarters on that day. Later the witness said that he also saw many members of the Interahamwe going into the commander's office. “They went in a pick-up vehicle and they had no weapons. When they came out, they carried weapons,” he said. However, DCB said during cross-examination by Bagosora's lead counsel, Raphael Constant (Martinique/France) that most of what he testified was hearsay. The next prosecution witness to testify on Monday is XAF. In the military trial, Bagosora is co-accused with Lieutenant Colonel Anatole Nsengiyumva who was in charge of the Gisenyi military area (western Rwanda),general Gratien Kabiligi who was responsible for military operations at the headquarters of the army and Major Aloys Ntabakuze who was in charge of the Kanombe para-commando battalion. All have pleaded not guilty of genocide and crimes against humanity. The trial is in Trial Chamber One of the ICTR, presided by Norwegian Judge Erik Mose, assisted by judges Serguei Egorov from Russia and Jai Ram Reddy from Fiji. SV/CE/FH (ML'0206e)