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Last Updated: Wednesday, 28 November 2007, 13:49 GMT
Rwanda 'hate media' terms slashed
Ferdinand Nahimana (l) and Hassan Ngeze (r)
Their lawyers had said they were exercising free speech
Three Rwandan media executives have had their sentences reduced for inciting violence against ethnic Tutsis during the genocide when 800,000 people died.

The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda reduced the life sentences of Ferdinand Nahimana and Hassan Ngeze to 30 and 35 years respectively.

Jean-Bosco Barayagwiza's jail term was reduced from 35 to 32 years.

Nahimana and Barayagwiza set up a radio station which broadcast lists of people to be killed in 1994.

Radio Television Libre des Mille Collines (RTLM) urged Hutus to "exterminate the cockroaches" in the wake of the assassination of President Juvenal Habyarimana on 6 April 1994.

Barayagwiza was also a leading member of the Coalition for the Defence of the Republic (CDR) - a Hutu extremist party.

Ngeze was the editor of an extremist Hutu magazine called Kangura.

He was convicted for the publication's incitement to hatred but also for his role in the killings of Tutsis in his home town of Gisenyi.

The Tanzanian-based International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) originally sentenced the men in 2003.

The presiding appeal judge, Fausto Pocar, said the appeal tribunal had overturned the conclusion of the initial trial judges that there had been "an understanding" between the accused - RTLM, the CDR and Kangura with a view to committing genocide.

Since 1997 ICTR has convicted 29 genocide ringleaders and acquitted five people.

About 800,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus were slaughtered in just 100 days in 1994.

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