Kigali, 7 May 2009 (FH) - A court in south-western Rwanda sentenced Tuesday to life in prison a man and his four sons after having found them guilty of the murder in 1995 of a survivor of the 1994 genocide, reports Hirondelle Agency.

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The first instance court of Rusizi concluded, in its judgement, that Alphonse Kompanyi, in his sixties, and his sons, had killed Antoine Mishogoro, according to the Registry of the court Thursday.

However, Suzanne Nyirabashyitsi, Kompanyi's wife, was acquitted in the trial.

Mishogoro was Kompanyi's brother-in-law.

Tried in first instance in 2001, the five accused were acquitted.

According to Marcel Ntabanganyimana, the son of the victim, Kompanyi had initially vainly tried to kill Mishogoro who had sought refuge at his home during the 1994 genocide.

The convict killed his brother-in-law in order to seize his goods. 

According to IBUKA, the main organization of genocide survivors, nearly 200 survivors, including 64 cases of poisoning, were killed from 1995 into the first quarter of 2009.

Following the increase of murders, the office of the Prime Minister in April sensitized people on the need to take care of the security of the survivors and witnesses of the genocide.

At the beginning of April, the day before the 15th commemoration of the genocide, the Rwandan police announced to have reinforced the security of the survivors.

The president of Ibuka, Theodore Simburudali, affirmed that "the safety of the genocide survivors is not completely guaranteed, in spite of the assurance from the government".

"The genocide survivors are still being massacred in areas of the interior of the country (...) one would not have to occult these slaughters by allotting them to settlings of family scores", he had told AFP.

According to Ibuka (remember, in Kinyarwanda), at least three survivors were killed and their bodies thrown in the Nyabarongo river (southern Rwanda) a few days before the 15th genocide anniversary.


© Hirondelle News Agency