Idelphonse Nizeyimana, former second in command in charge of intelligence and military operations at ESO (Ecole des Sous Officiers) made his initial appearance today before Judge Khalida Rachid Khan and pleaded not guilty to all the charges against him. The date for commencement of his trial will be set later.
The accused, who was initially jointly charged with two others, Tharcisse Muvunyi (case on re-trial) and Idelphonse Hategekimana (trial in progress), is facing four counts of genocide, or in the alternative complicity in genocide, crimes against humanity (rape) and crimes against humanity (other inhumane acts).
According to the indictment, Nizeyimana, through the chain of command, is alleged to have exercised authority over soldiers and personnel at the camp and was perceived as a member of the elite inner circle (Akazu) of the late President Habyarimana. He is accused among other things, of having sent a section of soldiers to the home of the former Queen of Rwanda, Rosalie Gicanda, a symbolic figure for all Tutsis and ordered her execution, which was subsequently carried out.
Nizeyimana is alleged to have planned, incited to commit, ordered, committed, or in some other way aided and abetted the planning, preparation of executions he is charged with. He is also alleged to have known, or had reason to know, that his subordinates were preparing to commit or had committed one or more of the crimes and failed to take the necessary and reasonable measurers to prevent the said acts from being committed or to punish those who were responsible.
Nizeyimana was arrested in Kampala, Uganda on 5 October 2009 and was transferred to UN Detention Facility in Arusha on 6 October 2009.