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Genocide Accused Transferred to Tribunal

Genocide accused Yusufu Munyakazi was transferred today 7 May 2004 to the detention facility of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR). Munyakazi was arrested on 5 May 2004 in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) on a warrant issued by the Tribunal on 10 November 2000. As soon as a duty Counsel is assigned to him by the Registrar, Munyakazi will enter a plea at his initial appearance before a Trial Chamber judge.

Munyakazi will stand trial before the Tribunal as one of the leaders of the genocide in Rwanda. He is accused of leading the Interahamwe militia which killed thousands of civilian Tutsi in Cyangugu and Kibuye provinces in April and May 1994.

The Tribunal indicted Munyakazi on charges of genocide or alternatively complicity in genocide and extermination as a crime against humanity. According to the indictment, he is alleged to have planned, instigated, ordered, participated in and otherwise aided and abetted the killing of Tutsi civilians who took refuge in several churches in Cyangugu and Kibuye during the Rwanda genocide.

Born in 1935 in Kibuye, Munyakazi was a businessman and farmer in Bugarama commune in Cyangugu Prefecture and a leader of the Bugarama MRND militia (the Bugarama interahamwe).

The arrest of Munyakazi brings to 3 the number of accused persons arrested in DRC and the number of accused persons arrested by the Tribunal to 68.

The Registrar Mr. Adama Dieng thanked the Government of the Democratic Republic of Congo for its continued cooperation with the Tribunal. This arrest underlines the importance of Resolution 1534 (2004) adopted on 26 March 2004 by the UN Security Council requesting Member States to strengthen their support for the ICTR. The Resolution also reiterated the support of the Security Council for the ICTR and ICTY Prosecutors in their continuing efforts to bring indictees at large before the ICTR and ICTY.

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