Arusha, 12 June 2009 (FH) - The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) says that the appeals will continue until mid-2013 and not as stated earlier until next year.

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Addressing the ICTRT staff on Friday, ICTR President, Dennis Byron, added their work would continue beyond 2010. "This is important to support our budget submissions which will cover the upcoming two year,'' he said.

President Byron was briefing them over his address to the UN Security Council last week.

In another development the defence case of former Rwandan businessman, Yusuf Munyakazi on trial for genocide and crimes against humanity before the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), will commence on August 31, 2009.

During a status conference on Monday presided by the President of Trial Chamber I, Judge Florence Rita Arrey the parties have agreed that the defence should submit particulars of witnesses by July 31.

Tanzanian Professor, Jwani Mwaikusa, lead defence counsel for the accused told Hirondelle after the session that he was working with a tentative figure of 36 would be defence witnesses including two experts.

The prosecution rested its case on June 4, after fielding 12 witnesses to support accusations against the defendant.

The 74 year-old man was arrested in May 2004 in east of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) where he pretended to be an Imam, under the name of Mzee Mandevu (literally, the bearded old man in Kiswahili).

The trial began on 22 April.

Meanwhile, the re-trial of Lieutenant Colonel Tharcisse Muvunyi, which begins next Wednesday before the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), will plunge the judges at the heart of the delicacy of Rwandan proverbs.

During the 1994 genocide, the defendant was posted at the School for Non-Commissioned Officers in Butare, southern Rwanda. The prosecutor alleges that he was the interim commander, which the officer denies.

Muvunyi will be re-tried for a single fact: a speech which he allegedly made at a public meeting towards the end of May 1994 in the commerce center of Gikore, Nyaruhengeri commune, prefecture of Butare.

Arrested in February 2000 in the United Kingdom and transferred eight months later to the ICTR detention centre, Lieutenant Colonel Muvunyi was sentenced to 25 years in prison on 12 September 2006 after being found guilty of genocide, direct and public incitement to commit genocide and other inhuman acts.

On 29 August 2008, the Appeal Chamber had cancelled the guilty verdict as well as the sentence, and had ordered a new trial for "direct and public incitement to commit genocide", related to the speech in Gikore.

Next week, the trial of former military officer, Ephrem Setako, will also resume.


© Hirondelle News Agency