afrol News, 27 April - Samuel Musabyimana (44), formerly Bishop of the Anglican Diocese of Shyogwe, Gitarama prefecture in Rwanda, was arrested in Nairobi yesterday and transferred immediately to the Detention Facility of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) in Arusha.
Musabyimana is charged with four counts including Genocide, Conspiracy to commit Genocide and Crimes against Humanity, specifically extermination, according to information from the ICTR.
The arrest was carried out by the Kenyan Police on the basis of a warrant of arrest issued by the Tribunal on 13 March 2001. Musabyimana was originally arrested by the South African authorities on immigration charges in September 2000 and deported to Kenya where he escaped.
The Tribunal’s Prosecutor, Ms. Carla Del Ponte, expressed her satisfaction that the arrest had now been successfully accomplished.
Speaking from Nairobi, the Registrar of the Tribunal, Mr. Adama Dieng said, "I thank the Kenyan authorities for their cooperation and for the efficient execution of the arrest warrant. This bodes well for the work of the Rwanda Tribunal."
The indictment charges that during April and May 1994, following escalation of the Rwandan conflict in Gitarama prefecture, Bishop Musabyimana publicly stated "that the situation for the Tutsi was very bad and that their end had arrived," according to a statement from the Tribunal.
- On the arrival of refugees at the Shyogwe Diocese the Anglican Bishop instructed his subordinate to register them according to their ethnic groups, the statement reads. "The list of refugees was later used to select Tutsi refugees who were taken to nearby sites to be killed. The Bishop is also said to have paid the militias who carried out the killings."
The count of conspiracy is based upon meetings with high level government and military officials organized or attended by Musabyimana. According to information from the ICTR, Bishop Musabyimana is said to have consorted regularly with Ministers of the interim Government of Rwanda and acted as an emissary abroad of the Government to legitimize its policies. This was at a time when those policies were known to include a plan of extermination of the Tutsi and the Hutu political opposition, according to the Tribunal.
The Tribunal today informed that "duty counsel will immediately be appointed by the Registrar to assist Bishop Musabyimana and to advise him of his rights during his detention. A date will shortly be fixed for his initial appearance before a judge of the Tribunal when he will enter a plea to the charges against him."
The Kenyan lawyer acting for Samuel Musabyimana says he was arrested outside his Nairobi apartment by members of the Kenyan criminal investigation department and UN officials, according to the BBC.
Between 750,000 and 1 million Tutsis and moderate Hutus were killed in the 1994 genocide, which now is known to have been carefully planned by the extremist Hutu government and its colaborators. The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda is targeting the main responsibles for the genocide, and has, among others, so far convicted Jean Kambanda, former Prime Minister of Rwanda. 46 individual cases are up for the Tribunal.
Based on ICTR