Arusha, September 25, 2012 (FH) –The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) has completed the negotiations with the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights (ACHPR) to monitor cases transferred by the Tribunal to Rwanda for trial.

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“The current situation is that ICTR through the Registry has completed the negotiations with the ACHPR,” the Spokesperson of the Tribunal, Roland Amoussouga, told Hirondelle News Agency on Tuesday.

“A Memorandum of Understanding will be soon signed and the ACHPR will thereafter start its monitoring of the (Jean) Uwinkindi case in Rwanda”, he added.

Two ICTR staff members were appointed in April this year as interim monitors of the cases, pending final agreement with the ACHPR to undertake such assignment. The ACHPR is charged with protection and promotion of human and people’s rights, among others.

When granting the referral application for Uwinkindi case in June 2011, judges of the Tribunal requested the Registrar to secure a written agreement with the ACHPR which would clearly stipulate the logistical, financial and other modalities by which the monitoring shall be carried out.

According to the judges, “ACHPR shall submit a regular report every three months on the status of proceedings to the President through the Registrar upon commencement of the trial and until the completion of the trial and the appellate process for the accused and through to the enforcement of sentence, if any.”

They were satisfied that a robust monitoring by the Commission would ensure that any material violation of the fair trial rights of the accused would be brought to the attention of the President forthwith so that remedial action, including revocation, could be considered by the Tribunal or Residual Mechanism.

The ICTR has referred eight cases to Rwanda for hearing. Uwinkindi, a Rwandan pastor, was transferred to Rwanda on April 19, 2012, becoming the first ICTR detainee to have his case heard by the Rwandan judiciary.

Apart from Uwinkindi, other transferred cases involve one detainee of the Tribunal, ex-leader of Interahamwe, six fugitives, including three mayors, one communal police official, ex-army officer and restaurant manager. However, two of the cases are pending on appeal.