Theo Nkembe
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Theo Nkembe speaks on...

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Interview Date:
October 28, 2008
Kigali, Rwanda
Lisa P. Nathan
Nell Carden Grey
12:19 - 14:50


Lisa P. Nathan: So in your time here, in the past ten years, you’ve had many experiences with the ICTR in the Office of the Prosecutor working with evidence, hearing all sorts of stories from the field, stories from the courts. Has there been anything that really surprised you about the way the court and the ICTR works?
Yeah, mainly what surprised me a lot is the attitude of people that go in front of the court. I’m very surprised because what they did, in front of court they, they don’t accept what, what they did and this really surprised me. Maybe apart of one or two cases, three cases where there a plea of guilty, guilty plea says, “I know what I’ve done. It was planned,” you know.
Even if you don’t say I’m sorry but if you agree on what you have, you ha-, you have done, for me I (__), I can understand. But you see in the, to say that in the majority of cases, they say, everybody says, “No, no. I’m not guilty. I’ve not done anything,” and in some cases even they try to justify what they have, they have done. So that, this is also for me, I don’t think that, because if you do something that you knew that what you are doing, you should stand and accept what you have done that.
“Yes, I’ve done it. I knew what I was doing,” and maybe try to justify but not say, “I did not do it,” and justify in the negative way. That was, me, I was, ’till today I am, I’m very, I'm very surprised of the attitude when we have accusation in front of the court.
And even (___) now, with the lawyers, you know, the defense also will, they, they will do their jobs, say that, “Okay, do not accept,” as you know. I don’t, I don't learn anything (______) to you but the defense being there, the defense is there to, to protect, to protect those who are indicted in the court.