Rwandans face war crimes trial in Germany

2011-05-04 11:51

Stuttgart, Germany – The trial of two Rwandans charged with crimes against humanity and war crimes for violence carried out against civilians in Congo has opened in southern Germany.

The trial is the first in Germany to be carried out under the principle of universal jurisdiction that allows states to pursue foreigners for crimes carried out abroad.

German prosecutors have charged Ignace Murwanashyaka and Straton Musoni with leading a mostly ethnic Hutu militia to kill more than 200 people, carry out numerous rapes and force children to serve as soldiers in the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda.

It was not immediately clear if the men would address the court at the opening today.

Both men were living in Germany at the time of their November 2009 arrest.

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