Arusha, June 6, 2011(FH) - Judges from the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) leave Tuesday for a site visit in the western part of Rwanda to evaluate the testimonies of witnesses in the case of former Mayor, Grégoire Ndahimana.

1 min 5Approximate reading time

According to ICTR press services, the prosecution and defence would also accompany the judges in the visit before returning to the Tribunal on June 10, 2011.

Among areas to be visited include the Nyange parish and its environs. Other areas are former Kivumu commune office, areas adjacent to the parish, including fields belonging to the parish in 1994, Nyange trading centre, the Virgin Mary Statue and former pharmacy of businessman Gaspard Kanyarukiga.

In the case, Ndahimana, who was mayor of Kivumu Commune in Kibuye prefecture, is charged with genocide or complicity in genocide, in the alternative and extermination, as a crime against humanity.

He is accused of planning massacres of Tutsis who sought refuge at the Nyange Church between April 14 and 16, 1994, jointly with other officials, including a parish priest, father Athanase Seromba, currently serving life imprisonment sentence for his involvement.

Others are businessman Gaspard Kanyarukiga, who was sentenced to 30 years imprisonment for similar offence and Fulgence Kayishema, former Judicial Police Inspector of the commune, who is still at large.  More than 2000 Tutsi refugees were allegedly killed at the church.

Ndahimana was arrested in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) on August 10, 2009. He was transferred to Arusha on August 21, 2009.  He made his initial appearance on September 28, 2009 and denied all the charges.

His trial took off on September 6, 2010 and the prosecution called 15 witnesses tbefore closing its case on November 19, 2010. Ndahimana opened his defence on January 17, 2011. He closed his case on May 13, 2011 after calling 30 witnesses.


© Hirondelle News Agency