10.08.07 - ICTR/GOVERNMENT II - FORMER MINISTER BICAMUMPAKA BEGINS HIS DEFENCE MONDAY

Arusha, 10 August 2007 (FH)-Jerome Bicamumpaka, foreign minister in the interim government that was in power during the 1994 genocide, will begin his defence Monday before the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR).
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Accused of genocide and crimes against humanity, Bicamumpaka, 50, is being tried with three other ministers in a trial that has been ongoing since 6 November 2003.

Monday morning, the lead counsel, Pierre Gaudreau (Canada), will make an opening statement to introduce the twenty-five witnesses for the defence.

Bicamumpaka is the third accused in this joint trial to call defence witnesses after the former minister of commerce, Justin Mugenzi, and the former minister of health, Casimir Bizimungu.

The fourth defendant in this case is Prosper Mugiraneza, minister of civil service in 1994.

Often called Government II, this trial is the first to restart at the ICTR after the summer judicial recess. The proceedings in this case had been adjourned for two months.

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