Rwanda issues warrant for 1994 genocide suspect in France - 9japarrot


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Wednesday 26 August 2020

Rwanda issues warrant for 1994 genocide suspect in France

Some 800,000 people, mostly ethnic Tutsi, were killed during the Rwanda genocide [Finbarr O'Reilly/Reuters]

Ex-top military official Aloys Ntiwiragabo is investigated in France over role in killing spree that left 800,000 dead

Rwanda has issued an international arrest warrant for former Rwandan spy chief, Aloys Ntiwiragabo, who is under investigation in France over his role in the African country's 1994 genocide.

Prosecutor-general Aimable Havugiyaremye told reporters on Tuesday Rwandan authorities "have investigated his case" and "are working with the French unit in charge of combatting war crimes and crimes against humanity".

France opened a probe into alleged crimes against humanity by the ex-military official after he was found in the suburbs of the city of Orleans, about 100km (62 miles) southwest of Paris.

French investigative news site Mediapart tracked down Ntiwiragabo, who had been identified by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) as one of the architects of the genocide.

Neither the ICTR, Interpol, France nor Rwanda were actively seeking him now and had dropped arrest warrants years ago.

The revelation of his whereabouts came barely two months after another suspected genocide architect, Felicien Kabuga, was arrested on a Paris suburb. Kabuga, who evaded police in several countries for 25 years, is accused of financing the genocide.

Kabuga had asked for a trial in France, citing frail health and claiming the United Nations court in Africa would be biased against him, and possibly hand him over to Rwandan authorities.

Meanwhile, Serge Brammertz, the chief prosecutor for the international tribunal handling Rwanda's genocide cases, arrived in Rwanda on Tuesday with a team of prosecutors and investigators.

Brammertz will spend two weeks in the country, while the team will remain for a month to investigate and gather evidence on Kabuga and other genocide suspects at large.

France has long been known as a hiding place for wanted genocide suspects. French investigators currently have dozens of cases under way, although Paris has so far never extradited a suspect to Rwanda.

A plane carrying President Juvenal Habyarimana, from Rwanda's Hutu majority, was shot down in Kigali on April 6, 1994.

Some 800,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus were killed in 100 days of killing, orchestrated by the Hutu-led government and its ethnic militia allies.


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