Arusha, May 24, 2010 (FH) -Genocide-suspect Joseph Nzirorera Monday concluded giving his defence evidence in chief by asking the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) to observe justice, claiming that the charges brought against him by prosecution had no any iota of truth.

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"What I can say is that the charges against me are lies. Justice should be done in all fairness," Nzirorera, Ex-Secretary General of MRND, former Rwandan ruling party, testified when examined by his lead counsel Peter Robinson.

He testified that he was confident with justice set up at the Tribunal and that is why he did not resist when he was arrested in Benin on June 5, 1998 thought he was not told of nature of offences he was going to face.

Nzirorera admitted, however, that when he was in exile in Cameroon he escaped to Zaire, now Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and later to Benin upon discovering that an arrest warrant was issued against him in Kigali.

"I did not surrender myself because I learnt that the arrest warrant was issued in Kigali. I thought I might be prosecuted by those who were fighting us," he testified without giving clarification.

However, Nzirorera testified that he found no reason of going into hiding further upon noticing it was the UN Tribunal set up in Arusha that was looking for him, believing justice would be done.

The trial Chamber III adjourned the cross-examination for Nzirorera to give room two other witnesses who had expressed  their wish to return the earliest possible to Europe where they are living. The defence hearing continues Tuesday.

Nzirorera is being tried jointly with other two former senior party leaders, President Mathieu Ngirumpatse and his Vice-President Edouard Karemera. They are mostly charged  with crimes allegedly committed by members of their party. Karemera has already completed his defence.


© Hirondelle News Agency