On 30 June 2010, the Honorable Martin Ngoga, Prosecutor General of the Republic of Rwanda and the ICTR Chief of External Relations and Strategic Planning Section and Spokesperson, Mr. Roland Amoussouga, held a joint press conference at the ICTR Headquarters in Arusha on the status of cooperation between Rwanda and the Tribunal. During the press conference, among other issues, the matter concerning the ongoing case of ICTR Defence lawyer Peter Erlinder before the Rwandan courts was discussed.
Both Hon. Ngoga and Mr. Amoussouga underlined the good cooperation between Rwanda and the Tribunal, essential for ensuring the smooth functioning of the trials.
Hon. Ngoga assured the current ICTR Defence lawyers that they can continue their work in Rwanda without fear. He also underlined the commitment of Rwanda to honour its obligations under the Memorandum of Understanding between the Tribunal and Rwanda.
Hon. Ngoga stressed that the case against Mr. Erlinder is not based on his work before the Tribunal and is a specific case that does not have implications for the work of the other Defence counsel. In the opinion of the Rwandan Government, the prosecution of Mr. Erlinder does not violate international law. However, Hon. Ngoga made clear that Rwanda will respect conflicting findings of the ICTR or the UN Office of Legal Affairs.