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WORLD BRIEFING : TANZANIA : Judge orders Rwandan freed

November 17, 2009|Times Wire Reports

A U.N. appeals court overturned the conviction of the former Rwandan president's brother-in-law, who had been sentenced to 20 years for organizing a massacre that left about 1,000 dead during the 1994 genocide.

The judge at the court in Arusha, Tanzania, said serious errors were committed in Protais Zigiranyirazo's 2008 conviction and sentencing and ordered him freed. Zigiranyirazo, 71, stood in disbelief.

An estimated 800,000 ethnic Tutsis and politically moderate Hutus were killed in Rwanda's genocide, which began after President Juvenal Habyarimana's plane was brought down in April 1994. Zigiranyirazo was an influential member of the government at the time.

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