The Hague, August 17, 2011 (FH) - Judges at the Interrnational Criminal Court have postponed for the second time confirmation of charges hearings in the case of Callixte Mbarushimana, suspected of war crimes and crimes against humanity in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo in 2009. The confirmation of charges hearings are now scheduled for September 16, 19 and 20.

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The decision by the pre-trial chamber came in response to a request from the defence, presented at the last minute on August 16. The defence asked for the hearings to be postponed from August 17 because it said the prosecution had not provided translations of certain documents into French or Kinyarwanda, the languages understood by the accused.

The judges said they wanted to express "profound dissatisfaction" with both the prosecution and the defence. They said the chamber "has been bombarded by the parties, mainly the Defence, with filings on a series of issues that can mostly be considered minor in comparison with the fact that the Defence has not been able to appropriately process thousands of pages of important information". The judges view was that the defence should have recognized the translation problem earlier and informed the court immediately. They ordered the prosecution to submit the required translations to the defence by August 31.

Born in northern Rwanda, Mbarushimana was arrested in Paris on October 11, 2010. He has been detained at the ICC in The Hague since January 25, 2011.


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