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Wednesday, June 29, 2005

BBC NEWS | Africa | Two Rwandans guilty over genocide

BBC NEWS | Africa | Two Rwandans guilty over genocide Two Rwandans guilty over genocide
A Belgian court has found two Rwandans guilty of war crimes and murder linked to the 1994 genocide in their country.

Half-brothers Etienne Nzabonimana, 53, and Samuel Ndashyikirwa, 43, were convicted by the court in Brussels.

The pair, who will be sentenced after a further hearing, denied charges of helping extremist Hutu militia massacre some 50,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus.

They were tried under a Belgian law allowing trials for war crimes, even when committed by foreigners elsewhere.

Prosecutors said the two businessmen provided weapons, vehicles and beer for militias in Rwanda's south-eastern Kibungo region during the April killings.

Dozens of Rwandans testified against the two men.

After two Rwandan nuns were convicted of taking part in the genocide in a landmark 2001 trial, Belgium was inundated with lawsuits for war crimes against world leaders, such as Israel's Ariel Sharon and former US President George Bush.

The law was changed so that those charged had to live in Belgium - which was the case with the two Rwandan half-brothers.

Some 800,000 people were slaughtered in the 1994 genocide.

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