Arusha, December 8, 2010 (FH) - The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) Prosecutor Hassan Jallow has urged the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Kenya, Zimbabwe and neighbouring states to intensify cooperation in tracking the remaining 10 fugitives, including Felicien Kabuga, Major Protais Mpiranya and Augustin Bizimana.

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"It is necessary that the governments of DRC, Kenya, Zimbabwe and neighbouring states intensify cooperation and search for the 10 fugitives, all of whom, according to our sources, are within east, central and southern Africa," he told the UN Security Council on Monday.

Kabuga is a Rwandan businessman allegedly bankrolled the 1994 genocide, while Mpiranya, the alleged high level fugitive and a top indictee of the Tribunal, was commander of the Rwandan Presidential Guard during genocide whereas Bizimana was Minister of Defence.

The prosecutor pointed out that tracking efforts to secure the arrest and transfer to the ICTR of Kabuga, Mpiranya and Bizimana would continue to be a top priority.

"We count on the continued call by the Security Council on all states to cooperate fully with the tribunal in its efforts to apprehend and bring these fugitives to justice. We are committed, in the meantime, to continue and intensify our tracking efforts so long as these fugitives remain earmarked for trial at the ICTR," he said.

Jallow also stressed that the referral of all but three of the ten fugitives to national jurisdictions for trial remains a key element of the completion strategy of the ICTR. In the absence of acceptance of these cases by other member states, he said, Rwanda continued to be the focus of the ICTR referral strategy.

"It is my sincere hope that member states with the requisite capacity will share this responsibility of the ICTR's completion strategy by accepting a transfer from the Tribunal of the cases of one detainee and six fugitives to their national jurisdictions for trial," he pointed out.

The prosecutor pointed out further that in the absence of transfer of these cases and with the probable arrest of fugitives in the near future, the work of the Tribunal could increase significantly, thus extending the projected completion date for trials.

"On the other hand the referral of these cases now to national jurisdictions could possibly see the end of trials at the Tribunal by the end of 2011," he said.

In November 2010, the prosecutor filed three new applications for referral of cases to Rwanda for trial involving Pastor Jean Uwinkindi, a detainee and two fugitives, Fulgence Kayishema, who was communal judicial police inspector and ex-mayor Charles Sikubwabo. The first five requests were rejected by ICTR judges.


© Hirondelle News Agency