Arusha, February 04, 2010 (FH) - Genocide-convict Juvenal Kajeljeli Thursday asked the President of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) to intervene on the treatment of their fellow prisoners who are serving their jail terms in Benin.

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Kajelijeli, former Rwandan mayor is serving a 45-year jail term in the West African country alongside eight others convicted of 1994 genocide. Another group of 14 are serving their sentences in Mali.

‘'We are human beings, please... Please... Please take care of us Mr. President,'' pleaded Kajelijeli before Judge Dennis Byron, who is also ICTR President, at the end of his testimony in the defence case of Joseph Nzirorera, former Secretary General of Rwandan presidential party in 1994, MRND.

He asked the ICTR President to use his powers to ensure that the genocide convicted persons get their rights as prisoners of the United Nations. Kajelijeli invited Judge Byron to visit them in Benin.

The witness had earlier denied that there was any conspiracy between him and the accused Nzirorera to kill Tutsis. ‘'There is no conspiracy between me and Nzirorera to kill ethnic-Tutsis,'' he told the Chamber during cross examination by American Prosecution Counsel, Don Webster.

The trial was adjourned to next Monday. 

Other defendants in this joint trial are Mathieu Ngirumpatse, former President of MRND and his Vice President, Edouard Karemera who had already completed his defence case.

The three men are held responsible for their superior responsibility for the crimes allegedly committed by their subordinates.


© Hirondelle News Agency