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Rwanda and Germany face off

November 11, 2008

Germany yesterday arrested a top Rwandan government official, and Rwanda is outraged. Rose Kabuye, a member of Parliament, was arrested while traveling through Frankfurt. But it’s not the Germans who want her; it’s the French, who two years ago indicted 9 advisers to Paul Kagame for conspiring to shoot down the plane of Rwanda’s previous president. That plane went down on the night of April 6, 1994; the genocide began only hours after. So to Kagame, that looks like accusing his closest circle of starting the genocide. (Here’s a 2006 BBC report on those French warrants.)

The Spaniards followed suit earlier this year, widening the circle to about 40 people. Since then, Kagame’s government has protested the “manipulation” of international justice mechanisms. He himself landed in Germany last night–not to deal with the Kabuye case, but to take up an invitation to talk business with private sector firms and to deliver a speech. (As a sitting head of state, he can’t be named in the warrants.)

Rwanda’s government said earlier this year that it would release a report before 2009 that details what it believes happened the night of the 1994 plane crash. That report will surely refute, at least in part, the French and Spanish judges’ claims. It will also go one step further to canonizing an official history of the genocide, a topic whose historiography is already rife with controversy. But that’s for another time…

Here’s a local report, from Uganda’s Daily Monitor, about the Kabuye case.

And here’s the latest wire story.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Theo permalink
    November 11, 2008 10:21 pm

    this is what colonialist think that what they did which eventually led to genocide in Rwanda; they are trying to cover up their horrific deeds in genocide. They divided Rwandans during the Colonial era and planted hatred among brothers and sisterS. Shame that the world is watch this happening. N’we no blame after all even during genocide the world super powers said that “they had no interest in Rwanda” so they still have no interest there. God bless this world and my people.! We shall not yield this arrogance from those who think they can do anything without any “sign stop” The french troops let many innocent to be killed and just saved “whites” and their dogs during the 1994 genocide. Now they are arresting the people who stopped genocide. Our Heroes..! shameeeeeeeeeee!

  2. J.Maisha permalink
    November 12, 2008 2:14 am

    Just to make some corrections: Rose is a former Member of Parliament and not a sitting one as stated in your post.
    Two, the report you say will be released in 2009 is presumably the Mucyo Report, which was released recently. You can find its details via google search. You owe it to your readers to publish these corrections.

  3. November 12, 2008 12:24 pm

    Hi J. Maisha– Thanks for these. I wasn’t referring to the Mucyo report, which came out in July and, as I understand it, investigated the role of the French in the genocide; I was referring to the report of a commission set up in 2007, to investigate the plane crash. Here’s an old VOA story about that commission: I can’t seem to locate the article I read that said the final report would come out this year, or perhaps I confused it with the final report on the French. In any case, it’s my understanding they’re two different reports.

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