Arusha, September 19, 2011 (FH) - The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda will start conducting special deposition proceedings in the case of former Rwandan Commander of Presidential Guard, Major Protais Mpiranya, on October 19, 2011, in order to preserve the prosecution's evidence against him.

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"I order the special deposition proceedings pursuant to Rule 71bis of the Rules of Procedure and Evidence to commence on October 19, 2011. This session will end on November 4, 2011," Judge Florence Rita Arrey, who has been assigned to conduct the proceedings, said in a scheduling order of September 15, 2011.

Rule 71 bis states, among others, that "if within a reasonable time, a warrant of arrest has not been executed, the Prosecutor may submit a request to the President that evidence relating to the indictment be preserved for a further trial by special deposition recorded in a proceeding conducted by a single Judge."

Mpiranya is charged with conspiracy to commit genocide, genocide or complicity in genocide, as alternative count, crimes against humanity and war crimes. Tanzanian lawyer, Francis Musei, as Duty Counsel, will defend the fugitive's rights during the proceedings. About 30 witnesses are expected to testify.

According to sources at ICTR, Mpiranya is allegedly being protected by senior officials in Zimbabwe.


© Hirondelle News Agency