04.03.11 - WEEKLY SUMMARY - LIBYA UNDER ICC PROBE OVER CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY

Arusha, March 4, 2011 (FH) -While the prosecutor at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague is declaring to have opened investigations in Libya, his counterpart before the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) in Arusha is taking measures to safeguard evidence against three most wanted fugitives linked with 1994 Rwandan genocide.
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In a press conference on Thursday, the ICC prosecutor, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, declared that he had started investigating alleged crimes against humanity committed in Libya since February 15, 2011.  According to him, he had identified several people at the top of the command chain who could be indicted.

They include Muammar Gaddafi and some of his sons, and some high ranking officials. The prosecutor warned further that leaders of opposition groups would also be investigated if have weapons and commit crimes.

The UN Security Council on February 26 referred the Libyan situation to the court, saying the widespread and systematic attacks currently taking place against civilian population may amount to crimes against humanity.

Before the ICTR, its spokesperson Roland Amoussouga, Tuesday announced that the prosecutor Hassan Jallow had filed motions, seeking to safeguard evidence against three key suspected perpetrators of the 1994 Rwandan genocide on the run, including the alleged financier Felicien Kabuga.

Others are Augustin Bizimana, former Minister of Defence and Major Protais Mpiranya, who was Commander of the Presidential Guard. The spokesperson said the ICTR President has appointed a Trial Chamber in order to rule on those motions and the Registrar has appointed three duty counsels to represent best interests of the suspects.

Before the same Tribunal, defence case of former Rwandan mayor, Grégoire Ndahimana, was adjourned to April 18, while that of ex-Youth Minister Callixte Nzabonimana resumed and called four witnesses. Other defence witnesses are expected next week.

FK/ER/GF

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