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Joint trial of Kayishema and Ruzindana adjourned to 17 August 1998

At the request of the Defence, the joint trial of Clement Kayishema, a former Prefect of Kibuye and Obed Ruzindana, a former businessman has been adjourned to 17 August 1998 when more Defence witnesses are expected to continue giving evidence before Trial Chamber 2. The Defence told the court that the accused had fifteen more very important witnesses who are presently said to be scattered in various refugee camps and other locations out of Rwanda.

In this regard, the Witnesses and Victims Protection Unit on 2 July 1998 requested the Chamber to give it adequate time to bring them before the Tribunal.

The last Defence witness was Dr. Regis Pouget, a psychiatrist who finished testifying on Thursday, 2 July 1998. He was able to give evidence only after the Chamber dismissed a motion by the Prosecution asking the court not to admit his evidence. Dr. Pouget told the court that under the circumstances prevailing in Rwanda in 1994 genocide can be explained as "the mob psychology".

A total of 52 Prosecution witnesses and 17 Defence witnesses have already testified in the trial which began on 7 April 1997.

Mr. Kayishema and Mr. Ruzindana are jointly charged with Genocide, Crimes Against Humanity, Violations of Article 3 Common to the Geneva Conventions and of Additional Protocol 2. They have pleaded "not guilty" to six joint counts, while Mr. Kayishema is separately charged with 18 other counts.


Elie Ndayamhaje requests change of Counsel

On 2 July 1998, Trial Chamber 2 heard a motion filed by Elie Ndayambaje, a former Bourgmestre of Muganza, in which he is seeking to obtain the withdraw of his counsel Mr Charles Tchoungang and the assignment of another counsel. The accused requested the Chamber to order Mr. Tchoungang to return all files related to his case as well as request the Registrar to replace both Tchoungang and the co-counsel. Ruling on the motion will be made next week.

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