ARUSHA - Two people convicted by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) for the 1994 genocide, left the Arusha based tribunal for Mali where they will serve the remainder of their sentences.
The two transfers were of the former editor of the extremist Kangura newspaper, Hassan Ngeze and Ferdinand Nahimana, a historian and co-founder of the extremist radio station Radio Télévision Libre des Mille Collines (RTLM).
The duo, had on first instance, been sentenced to life imprisonment but the Appeals Chamber commuted their sentences to 35 and 30-year imprisonment respectively.
ICTR Spokesperson Roland Ammousouga confirmed to The New Times that that the two had been transferred, but declined to mention if any new transfers would be made and to which country.
“My statement to the media is only that ICTR started the transfer operations of all convicted persons. It’s ongoing,” he said.
Rwanda earlier signed an agreement with ICTR to host the convicted with preparations being made accordingly.
These included the construction of prison facilities that meet UN standards. Other countries to make similar applications are: Mali, Italy, Benin, Swaziland, France, and Sweden.
According to an agreement between the UN and Tanzania, convicted persons cannot remain in the host country’s soil.
The convicts transferred to Mali will join six other ICTR prisoners, who include the former Prime Minister of the interim government during the genocide, Jean Kambanda, who was transferred there in 2001, and is serving a life sentence.
ICTR’s special detention facility is holding 17 convicted persons who are waiting for a host country.