The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) today took custody of Gaspard Kanyarukiga who South African authorities arrested on 16 July 2004. The Tribunal indicted Kanyarukiga on four counts including genocide, complicity in genocide, conspiracy to commit genocide and extermination as a crime against humanity.
Kanyarukiga was born in 1945 in Kibuye prefecture in western Rwanda. During the 1994 genocide, he was a businessman in Kigali and Kibuye. In an indictment confirmed on 4 March 2002, he is alleged to have transported police and Interahamwe’s militia to Nyange Church in the Kivumu commune of Kibuye where they poured fuel through the roof, set the building on fire and used grenades and guns to kill about 2000 Tutsi civilians who had taken refuge there.
Kanyarukiga allegedly supervised the massacres and then ordered the corpses of the victims removed and Nyange Church to be destroyed. He is alleged to have held several meetings with religious and political leaders in Kivumu where they conspired to kill members of the Tutsi ethnic group.
Kanyarukiga is to be held in the UN Detention Facility in Arusha pending his trial before the Tribunal. The arrest of Kanyarukiga brings to 69 the number of accused persons arrested by the Tribunal.