Arusha, 7 January 2008 (FH) - The trial before the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) of Simon Bikindi, a musician who is accused of having participated in the 1994 genocide, is expected to move to Rwanda temporarily in April where the judges hope to visit the alleged sites of the murders committed by the accused.

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 However, the information could not be confirmed by the tribunal authorities as the court is officially on Christmas and New Year holidays until next week.

Hirondelle News Agency source indicated that the most likely dates for the visit would be second week of April if everything goes according to plans.

It would be the seventh visit of a chamber to Rwanda.

The trial presentations began in September 2006 and were completed by November. However, chamber has not set the date for the closing arguments .

The judgement is expected to be delivered before first half of this year.

The Bikindi case rests primarily on three of his songs. During the trial,the two parties called expert witnesses to interpret divergent translations from the original Kinyarwanda of Bikindi’s songs.

Bikindi was also indicted for acts allegedly committed in June and July 1994 when he had returned to Rwanda after a trip and before he escaped to Zaire (now Democratic Republic of Congo).

According to the prosecution, Bikindi is alleged to have directed the notorious Interahamwe militia at road blocks to intercept and kill Tutsis. Bikindi has denied the accusations.

The singer, who is defended by Andreas O' Shea, assisted by Jean de Dieu Momo, is before trial judges Mrs Inès Weinberg de Rocca(presiding), Mrs. Rita Arrey and Mr. Robert Fremr.

© Hirondelle News Agency