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Friday, October 7, 2022

Belgium drops case on Rwanda two

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Rwanda's President Paul Kagame brought the genocide to an endA court in Belgium has decided not to proceed with a prosecution against two Rwandan generals.

The two were accused of involvement in shooting down the plane carrying the Rwandan President Juvenal Habyarimana, which triggered the 1994 genocide.

A French judge issued an arrest warrant for the pair in 2006.

Belgium had said it would deal with it under its law of global jurisdiction, but defence lawyers argued the indictment violated that principle.

The Rwanda government was infuriated when the arrest warrants for Lt Gen Charles Kayonga and Brig Gen Jack Nziza were issued and cut off diplomatic ties, accusing France of involvement in the genocide.

Large protests

The court’s decision, reached on Monday but not made public, was confirmed to the BBC by Serge Mourrau, a lawyer for the two generals.

Rwanda had convinced other African countries not to implement the indictment and the African Union had asked for the charges to be dropped.

It was the same indictment that led to the arrest of Rwanda’s Chief of State Protocol Rose Kabuye, who is now awaiting trial in Paris.

Her detention sparked anger in Rwanda, with large protests demanding her immediate release.

Rwanda has set up its own commission of inquiry into its claims that France backed the militias who slaughtered some 800,000 ethnic Tutsis and moderate Hutus.

The Tutsi-dominated Rwandan Patriotic Front of President Paul Kagame ended the genocide when it seized power from the Hutu government in 1994.

It has always said the shooting down of the plane carrying Mr Habyarimana, a Hutu, was carried out by Hutu extremists to justify putting their genocidal plans into action.

BBC

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