Rwanda: Weekly Summary - Swiss Firm Suspected of War Crimes Complicity, Rwandan Goes to European Court

Arusha — Swiss federal authorities have opened an investigation into a Swiss company for suspected complicity in war crimes in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Meanwhile, a Rwandan took his fight against extradition to the European Court of Human Rights.

SWITZERLAND/ DRC:

TRIAL versus Argor-Heraeus: Swiss federal authorities said Monday they have opened an investigation into the Argor-Heraeus company for suspected laundering linked to war crimes and complicity in war crimes. This follows a complaint filed by Swiss NGO Track Impunity Always (TRIAL), based partly on UN investigations in 2004-2005 into businesses involved in gold and arms trading. According to TRIAL, the precious metals refining company Argor-Heraeus knowingly purchased gold from pillage by an armed group in eastern DRC. The company strongly denies the accusations.

RWANDA/EU:

Rwandan goes to European court: A Rwandan threatened with extradition from Denmark to his native country on Thursday took his case to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR). The Danish Supreme Court on Wednesday confirmed a decision to extradite Emmanuel Mbarushimana, whom Kigali suspects of involvement in the 1994 genocide. Mbarushimana was a primary school inspector in southern Rwanda during the genocide. His lawyer, Bjoern Elmqvist, said he had gone to the ECHR because he would not get a fair trial in Rwanda and "he fears the courts there are not independent". ICC/KENYA

Kenyan Deputy President's trial postponed: The International Criminal Court (ICC) on Friday suspended the crimes against humanity trial of Kenyan Deputy President William Ruto and journalist Joshua Sang until November 21. The two men, who have been on trial since September 10, are charged in connection with violence that followed elections at the end of 2007. The Chamber also authorized Ruto not to attend the trial on November 21 so he can be present in Kenya when President Uhuru Kenyatta, also charged by the ICC, is on an official visit abroad.

NEXT WEEK:

France/Rwanda: The Paris Appeals Court is due to hand down a decision this Wednesday November 13 on whether to extradite Claude Muhayimana and Innocent Musabyimana, two Rwandans wanted by Kigali for suspected participation in the 1994 genocide.

ER/ JC

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