Ex-Rwandan mayor jailed over genocidal church massacre

2011-11-17 14:33

Arusha, Tanzania – An international court handed down a 15-year

jail term for genocide today to a Rwandan former mayor who failed to stop police

bulldozing a church, burying nearly 2 000 people sheltered inside.


Gregory Ndahimana (59) mayor of the Kivumu district during the 1994

genocide, helped fuel the massacre with his presence outside the Catholic church

at Nyange, the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) ruled.


“The majority of the trial chamber... condemns Ndahimana to a

single sentence of 15 years imprisonment,” Judge Florence Arrey announced.


“The presence of the accused at the scene of the crime had an

encouraging effect,” the ruling added.


Prosecutors alleged that the former mayor had planned and ordered

the massacre of Nyange and opened fire himself to start the killing.


However, those allegations were dismissed by the judges who said

they had not been proved beyond reasonable doubt.


Ndahimana is the third person to be tried and convicted by the ICTR

for the killing at Nyange.


The ICTR, based in the northern Tanzanian town of Arusha, was

established to try the key perpetrators of the genocide which claimed some 800

000 lives, mainly minority Tutsis, in a span of 100 days.

 

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