Arusha, February 11, 2011 (FH) - Seven events were reported by Hirondelle News Agency this week, including the decision by the Appeals Chamber of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) to order Rwandan Minister, General Marcel Gatsinzi, to testify in the case of genocide-convict Colonel Théoneste Bagosora, on March 30.

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The Chamber has warned that the failure by Gatsinzi, currently Minister for Natural Disaster and Refugee Affairs, to show up would constitute contempt of the Tribunal. To facilitate smooth implementation of the order, the Chamber has instructed the Registry to communicate with the minister and take all necessary measures to facilitate his presence.

Gen. Gatsinzi will testify during hearing of appeal by Bagosora as a Chamber's witness to shade lights on his superior responsibility between April 6 and 9, 1994. Bagosora, former Director of Cabinet in the Defence Ministry, was considered the mastermind of the 1994 Rwandan genocide.

Another event involved continuation of prosecution's case against genocide-accused, Captain Ildephonse Nizeyimana. It called six witnesses, including former Rwandan army officer, Justin Gahizi, who accused the defendant of buying beers to soldiers after he was informed of the killing Queen Rosalie Gicanda.

Before the ICTR there was also resumption of trial of Rwandan mayor, Grégoire Ndahimana.  The defendant continued presenting his defence case and called four witnesses. Likewise, ex-Rwandan Planning Minister, Augustin Ngirabatware, went on giving his own evidence under cross-examination by prosecution. The three sessions proceed Monday.

Whereas in Rwanda, the National Public Prosecution Authority accused Colonel Patrick Karegeya, a former member of President's Kagame entourage, of playing a role in fraudulently returning Felicien Kabuga's property to his children previously frozen by the judiciary.

Karegeya, who was Head of External Security in Rwanda before fleeing to South Africa where he currently lives in exile, allegedly returned to Kabuga's children, in 2003, two properties located in Kigali and paid their hotel bills. ICTR has issued an arrest warrant against Kabuga for his alleged participation in financing the 1994 genocide.

While in The Hague, the prosecution before the Special court for Sierra Leone requested for conviction of former Liberian president Charles Taylor of crimes against humanity and crimes of war charges he is facing. However, the prosecution's request was made amid the defence's boycott of the trial following refusal by the court to accept his final closing arguments for being submitted out of time. The hearing was postponed sine die.


© Hirondelle News Agency