Arusha, April 19, 2010 (FH) - Former Kigali Prefect Colonel Tharcisse Renzaho Monday told the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) that top officials of then ruling MRND party were not in a position to stop the war in Kigali in April 1994 because of the intolerable situation which prevailed at that time.

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‘'By that time,  the situation in Kigali was uncontrollable and complicated,'' he told the ICTR Chamber, referring to Joseph Nzirorera, then MRND Secretary General and his co-top party leaders, former President Mathieu Ngirumpatse and his former Vice-President Edouard Karemera.

In his further examination in chief led by defence counsel Peter Robinson, Colonel Renzaho told the Tribunal that the MRND leaders also had no [sufficient] ammunition to stop the war.

"These people had, therefore, no ability to restore peace," he testified, adding, however, that after April 6, 1994, he continued to broadcast over the radio with the aim of putting at an end to chaos, condemned violence and appealed to the people to calm the situation.

"The content of my message dealt with prevailing situation of war, disorder and chaos in Kigali. Shelling was going on. What we were attempting to stop was recurring.  There was goodwill on our part. We tried stopping the RPF to bomb the neighborhood, but we did not succeed," he testified.

Hearing of the case continues Tuesday.

In the trial, the trio is charged with crimes committed by members of their party. The prosecution has indicted them for their superior responsibility as top officials of the party then in power in 1994 under then President Juvenal Habyarimana. 


© Hirondelle News Agency