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Bernard Munyagishari sentenced to life imprisonment for genocide crimes

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By Our Reporter

Bernard Munyagishari aged 58 has been sentenced to life imprisonment by Rwandan court after being found guilty over a role he played in Genocide against Tutsi.

The special chamber of the High Court trying international crimes found Munyagishari guilty on counts because of participation in the Genocide against the Tutsi, and murder as a crime against humanity.

The prosecution well-maintained that the accused “willfully and knowingly” ordered a special corps of young interahamwe called the Ntarumikwa, to rape Tutsi women and girls before killing them.

But he was cleared of rape charges as the prosecution failed to present convincing evidence.

During the Genocide, Munyagishari worked in the then ruling party’s secretariat, and attended several meetings in which the Genocide was prepared, the court said. However he was cleared of rape charges as the prosecution failed to present convincing evidence.

Munyagishari is also said to have played a major role listing of Tutsi to be killed and was part of those who set up roadblocks where Tutsi were killed, the court revealed.

He was referred to Rwanda for trial by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) in in 2013.  The convict also scolded the two lawyers assigned to him by the Rwanda Bar Association on claims that they had misapprehensions with their former clients.

Munyagishari’s lawyers said they would appeal the verdict.

He is now becomes the second individual sent to Rwanda by ICTR to be convicted, after Pastor Jean Uwinkindi who was also sentenced by the same court to life imprisonment in December 2015.

 

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