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UN asks Commonwealth to arrest genocide suspects

By Vision Reporter

Added 23rd November 2007 03:00 AM

THE United Nations tribunal trying suspects of the 1994 Rwanda genocide has appealed to the Commonwealth to help it arrest 14 fugitives hiding in its member-states.

THE United Nations tribunal trying suspects of the 1994 Rwanda genocide has appealed to the Commonwealth to help it arrest 14 fugitives hiding in its member-states.

By Anne Mugisa, Josephine Maseruka and Madinah Tebajjukira

THE United Nations tribunal trying suspects of the 1994 Rwanda genocide has appealed to the Commonwealth to help it arrest 14 fugitives hiding in its member-states.

The spokesperson of the UN International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, Roland Kouassi Amoussouga, told journalists in Kampala on Thursday that the trials were supposed to be completed by December 2008.

The appeals should be through by 2010, he added.

In addition to arrests, the tribunal also wants the Commonwealth to help in transporting the witnesses to Arusha, Tanzania. “We have information that Felicien Kabuga is hiding in Kenya, which is a member-state of the Commonwealth,” Amoussouga said.

The suspects include Augustine Bizimana, Gregoire Ndahimana, Felicien Kabuga alias Idris Sudi, Bernard Munyagishani, Fulgence Kayishema, Jean Uwinkindi, Pheneas Munyarugarama and Protaise Mpiranya.

Others are Aloys Ndimbati, Nizeyimana Ildephonse, Nzabonimana Ladislas Ntaganzwa, Callixte alias Bwaranyaze Kiloto Ephrem, Charles Sikubwabo and Charles Rwandikayo.

According to Amoussouga, Kabuga is wanted because he was allegedly the sole funder of the genocide.

He financed the purchase of the machetes which were used to hack hundreds of thousands to death, Amoussouga added.

Amoussouga said two others suspects, Vinceslas Munyeshaka, a Catholic priest, and Laurent Bucyibaruta, would be tried in France.

The tribunal is yet to decide whether others could be tried in Rwanda.

Seventy-two of the 90 indicted suspects have been arrested.

Thirty-four of them have been tried; five acquitted and 29 sentenced to prison for between six years and life imprisonment.

Amoussouga said 28 suspects were being tried in Arusha, whereas the convicts were serving sentences in Mali, West Africa. The tribunal has also asked other countries to help in trying the suspects in order to beat the 2008 deadline.

According to Amoussouga, the tribunal wants to send a clear message that impunity will not be tolerated anywhere.

Commenting about the Ugandan rebel leader of the Lord’s Resistance Army, Joseph Kony, Amoussouga noted: “Whoever is creating havoc in Uganda or elsewhere in the world should know that the law will catch up with them.

“The mechanisms established either adhoc or permanent will call everybody responsible to book.”

The LRA have terrorised northern Uganda for 21 years.

UN asks Commonwealth to arrest genocide suspects

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