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Ethiopia appeal of former dictator Mengistu adjourned to July

[JURIST] Appeal proceedings in the case of former Ethiopian President Mengistu Haile Mariam [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] have been adjourned until July 3, following the orders of a judge on Tuesday. Mengistu, who received a life sentence in absentia last year [JURIST report] for his involvement in the genocide that ravaged Ethiopia in the 1970s, has lived in exile in Zimbabwe since he was ousted as president in 1991 and fled his home country. Prosecutors have appealed his life sentence [JURIST report] and are seeking the death penalty. The case was postponed Tuesday after defense lawyers filed their own appeal, seeking to reverse his life sentence. Both appeals will be considered together next month.

The Ethiopian war, often called the "Red Terror" [US LOC backgrounder], left tens of thousands of Ethiopians dead or missing in what Mengistu had hoped would be a return to a Soviet-style state. Zimbabwe has refused calls for Mengistu's extradition [JURIST report]. AFP has more.

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