Investigations close, appraisals begin


The 31 December 2004 marked the official end of investigations at the two UN courts for Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia. Thus, it is now possible to make a preliminary accounting of the Tribunal's records of indictments.

Figures for the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) are fairly precise. To date, the court has indicted 82 individuals, 14 of whom are still on the run. According to Chief Prosecutor Hassan Bubacar Jallow, 16 others, who he considers to "bear the heaviest responsibility", could still be added to the list. This means that 10 other suspects have just managed to avoid trial at the ICTR after long being on a list of 26 important suspects targeted by the prosecution. The prosecutor has announced he will be issuing indictments against the 16 people by June, even though he has until October to do so. Only at that time will the final number of indicted persons before the international court be known.
Clearly not all ICTR indictees will be tried. "Some may have died and others may never be arrested" says the prosecutor. The same applies for the 14 accused who have been on the run for many years, including the businessman Félicien Kabuga, who has famously escaped the prosecutor's team for nearly eight years. Jallow has also stated that if arrested, four of them will be sent to national courts to be tried.

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