ICTR Appeals Court upholds Munyakazi, Setako convictions

ARUSHA - The Appeals Chamber of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), on Wednesday, confirmed the sentences of former businessman Yusuf Munyakazi and former Rwandan military officer, Lt Col Ephreim Setako.Setako and Munyakazi were convicted on 25 February and 30 June 2010, respectively, and sentenced to 25 years in prison each, by Trial Chamber I.

ARUSHA - The Appeals Chamber of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), on Wednesday, confirmed the sentences of former businessman Yusuf Munyakazi and former Rwandan military officer, Lt Col Ephreim Setako.

Setako and Munyakazi were convicted on 25 February and 30 June 2010, respectively, and sentenced to 25 years in prison each, by Trial Chamber I.

The tribunal rejected appeals by the defence of the two convicts, which called for acquittal, and the prosecution, which wanted a heavier sentence of life imprisonment.

The chamber dismissed Setako’s appeal in its entirety and affirmed his conviction for genocide, for ordering the killing of Tutsis at Mukamira Military Camp.

It also convicted him for extermination as a crime against humanity, and for violence to life, health, and physical or mental well-being of persons (murder) as a serious violation of Article 3 common to the Geneva Conventions and of Additional Protocol II.

The Chamber dismissed Munyakazi’s appeal in which he argued that his alibi had not been taken into consideration.

The Appeals Court said the lower court had reasonably concluded that Munyakazi failed to provide notice of his alibi and found no error in the assessment of evidence.

“The  Appeals  Chamber  affirmed  Munyakazi’s  convictions  for genocide and extermination as a crime against humanity based on his role in the killings of  Tutsi  at  Shangi  and  Mibilizi  Parishes  on  29  and  30 April 1994, respectively,” reads an ICTR statement.

Born in 1936 in Rwamatamu, Western Province, Munyakazi was arrested in the Democratic Republic of Congo in 2004 and transferred to Arusha in 2004.

Setako was born in 1949 in Nkuli, in the Northern Province.

He was arrested  in  the  Netherlands  on  25 February 2004 and transferred to the United  Nations  Detention  Facility  (UNDF) in Arusha in  2004.

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