Posted by: africanpressorganization | 28 June 2011

ICTR press release / Case of Jean Uwinkindi Referred for Trial to the Republic of Rwanda



ICTR press release / Case of Jean Uwinkindi Referred for Trial to the Republic of Rwanda


ARUSHA, Tanzania, June 28, 2011/African Press Organization (APO)/ — Case of Jean Uwinkindi Referred for Trial to the Republic of Rwanda


The United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda today

referred the case of Jean Uwinkindi to the Republic of Rwanda to be tried

in the Rwandan national court system under Rule 11 bis, marking the first

time in the Tribunal’s history it has done so.


A specially designated Referral Chamber composed of Judges Florence Rita

Arrey, Presiding, Emile Francis Short and Robert Fremr decided upon

assessment of the submissions of the Defence and amici curiae (including

the Government of Rwanda, Human Rights Watch, the International

Association of Democratic Lawyers, the International Criminal Defence

Attorneys Association, and the Kigali Bar Association) that it was

satisfied that the Government of Rwanda was prepared to receive its first

referral from the ICTR.


While previous Referral Chambers were not inclined to grant similar

applications that had been placed before them, this Chamber was convinced

based on the evidence that Rwanda possesses the ability to accept and

prosecute Uwinkindi’s case. The Chamber expressed its solemn hope that

the Republic of Rwanda would actualize in practice the commitments it

made in its filings about its good faith, capacity and willingness to

enforce the highest standards of international justice.


In reaching its decision, the Chamber noted that Rwanda had made material

changes in its laws and had indicated its capacity and willingness to

prosecute cases referred by the ICTR adhering to internationally

recognised fair trial standards enshrined in the ICTR Statute and other

human rights instruments. In particular, the Chamber found that the

issues which concerned previous Referral Chambers, namely the

availability of witnesses and their protection, had been addressed to

some degree in the intervening period.


The Referral Chamber also requested that the Registrar appoint the

African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights to monitor Uwinkindi’s

trial in Rwanda and determined that the ACHPR would bring to the

attention of the ICTR President any potential issues that may arise

throughout the course of the proceedings. The Chamber emphasised its

authority under Rule 11 bis to revoke the case from Rwanda as a last

resort if necessary.


Uwinkindi was born in 1951 in Rutsiro commune, Kibuye prefecture, Rwanda.

He was a former Pastor of the Pentecostal Church of Kayenzi, located at

Nyamata sector, Kanzenze commune, Kigali-Rural prefecture. He is accused

of being responsible for attacks against Tutsi at Kayenzi Church, at

Biyimana and Rwankeri cellules, and in Cyugaro’s swamps.


His indictment included counts of genocide, conspiracy to commit

genocide, and extermination as a crime against humanity. He was arrested

in Uganda on 30 June 2010 and transferred to the United Nations Detention

Facility in Arusha, Tanzania on 2 July 2010.



International Penal Tribunal for Rwanda


%d bloggers like this: