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Hissène Habré's verdict expected in May

Hissène Habré's verdict expected in May

Senegal

The last stage of the trial of former Chadian dictator Hissène Habré is ongoing in the Senegalese capital Dakar.

The pleadings of fifteen civil party lawyers which started on Monday entered its second day on Tuesday February 9.

The prosecution is expected to conclude its argument on Wednesday, February 10, to make way for the three defense lawyers to present their case on February 11 and 12.

Mr. Habré does not recognise the legitimacy of the Extraordinary African Chambers and has refused to speak at the court.

His lawyer Francois Serres has also boycotted proceedings demanding they be given fair treatment.

Hearings will later be suspended for deliberations ahead of the verdict which is expected to be delivered in May.

Hissène Habré, who ruled Chad from 1982-90 is facing war crimes charges as well as charges of crimes against humanity and torture.

A legal adviser for Human Rights Watch, Reed Brody told the media, Hissène Habré was the mastermind behind the crimes committed during his rule.

“He even participated in some crimes himself. If he was not the instigator, he bears responsibility as the one who did nothing to prevent the crimes from being committed,” Mr. Brody said.

Close to a hundred testimonies of witnesses have been heard from September to December 2015.

The testimonies linked Habré to summary executions, use of force on inmates to dig graves and the insertion of exhaust pipes in the mouths of inmates whose hands were tied.

Hissène Habré‘s regime was toppled by incumbent president Idriss Deby.

He was arrested on June 30, 2013 and formally charged in July, the same year.

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