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Counsel says Interahamwe leader won`t receive fair trial in Rwanda

16th April 2012
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The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR)

The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) last week conducted a hearing on an application to refer genocide-accused, Bernard Munyagishari, to Rwanda for trial.

ICTR Defence opposes Munyagishari’s transfer to Rwanda: In a hearing on Thursday, the defendant’s counsel, Philippe Mariceau, claimed his client would not receive a fair trial if transferred to Rwanda.

He said the Tribunal was responsible to try Munyagishari, who was President of the

Interahamwe in Gisenyi prefecture, Northwest Rwanda in 1994. But in his response, Prosecutor James Arguin told the court that the accused would receive fair trial if transferred because Rwanda has made material changes in its laws and expressed readiness to meet international standards.

Detainees in Mali in safe hands: The Tribunal’s Spokesperson Roland Amoussouga said on Tuesday that the prisoners serving their sentences in Mali are safe despite the current situation in the country, where President Amadou Toumani Touré was toppled by a military junta last month.

Amoussouga said he had written to the families who had expressed their concern and assured them that all prisoners were in good condition and that he had talked to them over the phone last week.

Meanwhile, President Joseph Kabila said mid last week but would not surrender him to the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague. Instead, he said, Ntaganda would be tried in the DRC.

The ICC has been seeking Ntaganda's arrest for six years on war crimes charges for allegedly conscripting children and using them to participate actively in hostilities.

In the meantime, on Tuesday, defence counsel Xavier-Jean Keita claimed that Saif Al-Islam Gaddafi could be “sentenced to death and then executed” if he were to be tried in Libya.

ICC judges have ordered Libya to make arrangements to hand over Muammar Gaddafi's son, but Tripoli is insisting on trying him on its soil.

Saif al-Islam Gaddafi is wanted by the court for crimes against humanity.

SOURCE: THE GUARDIAN
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