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Press Release: ADC-ICT Expresses Serious Concern at Death of Anatole Nsengiyumva in Niger

THE HAGUE – The Association of Defence Counsel practising before the International Courts and Tribunals (ADC-ICT) expresses its sadness and serious concern at the death of Lt Col Anatole Nsengiyumva, one of the seven men detained in Niger.


Lt Col Nsengiyumva's death on 7 May 2024, in the house where he and other former defendants of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) have been unlawfully detained, marks the second death since their transfer by the UN International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals (IRMCT) in December 2021, following Mr. Muvunyi's passing in June 2023.


The conditions of their illegal detention place the remaining six men in an extremely precarious position in terms of their physical and mental well-being. Their prolonged detention is without any legal basis and demands an immediate resolution.  


Upon completion of their sentences or acquittals, former defendants are entitled to resume their lives with dignity, alongside their families from whom they have been separated for many years. Regrettably, the IRMCT and the international community have thus far fallen short in their duty to these men. The ADC-ICT reiterates that support for international criminal justice by States must not solely focus on convictions and sentences.


The re-incarceration of individuals released and acquitted by the ICTR is a stain on the legacy of the Tribunal and serves as a stark reminder of ongoing selective State cooperation that undermines the whole system.


The ADC-ICT urgently calls upon States to offer relocation outside of Niger to these individuals, to prevent further tragedies among the remaining six detainees.




The ADC-ICT is an independent professional association which represents all defence counsel practicing the IRMCT, and formerly before the ICTY. The ADC-ICT works to promote and protect the interests of defence counsel and their clients and ensure the proper function of defence is respected in proceedings before international courts and tribunals. Further information is available at:  

ADC-ICT Press Release - Death of Anatole Nsengiyumva
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