Arusha, January 25, 2013 (FH) – In The Hague, the Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL) heard appeals in the case of former Liberian president Charles Taylor, sentenced by the lower court to 50 years in jail. In Kigali, Pastor Jean Uwinkindi, transferred by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), challenged the law under which he is being prosecuted.

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SCSLAppeals hearings in Charles Taylor trial: The Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL), sitting in The Hague, ended appeals hearings Wednesday in the trial of former Liberian president Taylor, the first ex-head of state to be convicted by an international criminal court. Both the prosecution and defence are appealing. The judges said they hope to hand down their decision by the end of the year. 

RwandaConstitutional challenge: Pentecostal pastor Jean Uwinkindi, the first ICTR accused to be transferred for trial in Rwanda, mounted a constitutional challenge at the Supreme Court to the law under which he is being prosecuted. The Supreme Court will hand down a decision on February 22.

FranceRwandan arrested:  France announced Tuesday the arrest of a Rwandan suspected of having played a role in the genocide of Tutsis in Rwanda in 1994. Innocent Musabyimana, who is wanted by Kigali for genocide and crimes against humanity, was detained for questioning in the Côte d'Or region of eastern France.

THE WEEK AHEADRwandaThe trial of former Rwandan politician Léon Mugesera extradited from Canada a year ago, is due to resume Monday. The Rwandan linguist is accused of inciting genocide through a November 1992 speech.

ICCThe International Criminal Court is due to hold Tuesday a status conference in the case of Sudanese rebel leaders Abdallah Banda et Mohammed Jerbo, indicted for crimes committed in Darfur, in the west of their country.  FranceThe Appeals Court in Dijon, western France, is set to hear Wednesday the parties’ arguments on the Rwandan extradition request for Innocent Musabyimana, arrested this week in the Côte d’Or region.