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The Appeals Chamber Hears Oral Arguments in the Rukundo Case

The Appeals Chamber of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, composed of Judge Fausto Pocar, presiding, Judge Mehmet Güney, Judge Liu Daqun, Judge Theodor Meron, and Judge Carmel Agius, today heard oral arguments in the appeals lodged by Emmanuel Rukundo and the Prosecution against the Judgement pronounced by Trial Chamber II on 27 February 2009.

The Trial Chamber found Rukundo guilty of genocide through his participation in the killing of Madame Rudahunga and the causing of serious bodily harm to four other Tutsis who were abducted from Saint Joseph’s College, the abduction and killing of Tutsis from the Saint Léon Minor Seminary, and the sexual assault of a Tutsi woman at the seminary. In addition, it convicted Rukundo for murder as a crime against humanity for the killing of Madame Rudahunga and for extermination as a crime against humanity for his participation in the abduction and killings of Tutsis from the Saint Léon Minor Seminary. The Trial Chamber sentenced Rukundo to a single term of 25 years of imprisonment.

Rukundo contends that the Trial Chamber committed a number of errors of fact and law, and accordingly requests the Appeals Chamber to overturn his convictions or in the alternative to reduce his sentence. The Prosecution requests the Appeals Chamber to increase Rukundo’s sentence to life-imprisonment.

Rukundo was born on 1 December 1959 in Mukingi Commune, Gitarama Prefecture, Rwanda. He was ordained as a priest on 28 July 1991. In February 1993, Rukundo was appointed as a military chaplain for the Rwandan army, a position he maintained throughout the relevant events.

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