"Accepter de supporter indéfiniment le poids d’un crime qu’on n'a pas commis, porter injustement le qualificatif de « criminel de génocide » sans clamer son innocence est une entorse à la recherche de la vérité"
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Ladislas Ntaganzwa was extradited from DR Congo
Rwanda is currently pursuing 522 Genocide suspects hiding around the world and intends to intensify efforts to bring them to book.
The revelation, by the head of the Genocide Fugitive Tracking Unit (GFTU), John Bosco Siboyintore, came yesterday, a day after one of the suspects, Ladislas Ntaganzwa, was extradited from DR Congo.
Siboyintore told The New Times that GFTU now has 12 Police investigators, in addition to 12 prosecutors who analyse such cases before indictments are issued.
“The number of indictees is going up. We now have a team working on a day to day basis,” he said.
Last year, Siboyintore said, GFTU had 399 Genocide suspects indicted. However, the number shot to 522 in the first three months of this year.
In DR Congo, for example, Siboyintore said, there were 46 indicted suspects last year, but today they are 119.
“Emphasis is now being put in engaging countries where the suspects are, to either try them or extradite them.
We tell these countries that, ‘look, you have a problem. Your country harbours many Genocide fugitives and we need your collaboration,’” Siboyintore said.
“If they cannot be extradited to Rwanda for trial, at least they should try them in their own courts. These are cases of an international crime nature.”
Europe, the haven
Most of the Genocide fugitives residing in Europe are in France and Belgium.
Paris, among others, continues to provide safe haven to some of the most prominent genocidaires, including Agathe Kanziga, widow of President Juvenale Habyarimana – who continues to reside in France illegally; Sosthene Munyemana, nicknamed “The Butcher of Tumba”; and Dr Eugene Rwamucyo, suspected of involvement in the Genocide in southern Rwanda.
In Africa, most suspects are said to be hiding in neighbouing DR Congo and Uganda. Ntangazwa was arrested in DR Congo in December last year.
But many more still roam free there, including FDLR militia leader Sylvestre Mudacumura, the former deputy commander of the presidential guard during the 1994 Genocide, and many others in his group, continue to elude justice.
In 2009, Ugandan authorities arrested Idelphonse Nizeyimana, a former military intelligence officer accused of organising the slaughter of Tutsi civilians and ordering the murder the former Queen of Rwanda, Rosalie Gicanda as he entered the country by bus from DR Congo.
He was extradited to Arusha, Tanzania, to face trial before the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), which was last year replaced by the UN Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals (MICT).
Uganda’s envoy to Rwanda Richard Kabonero said whenever information is availed, his government is always able and inclined to help Kigali bring suspects to book.
“Whenever the government here asks, we provide assistance. We have in the recent past helped arrest some and will continue helping arrest others,” Kabonera said.
In 2010, Jean-Bosco Uwinkindi was arrested after entering western Uganda from DR Congo. At the time, Uwinkindi, a pastor at a Pentecostal church during the Genocide, was one of the ICTR’s 11 most wanted suspects.
During an event on the closure of ICTR, UN Security Council made a fresh call on all states to cooperate with the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals and the Government of Rwanda in the arrest and prosecution of the eight remaining ICTR-indicted fugitives.
"Etre libre, on ne le dira jamais assez, c'est vouloir aussi la liberté de l'autre, pour celui qui ne pense pas comme soi. C'est ne respirer soi-même largement que si l'on est assuré que l'autre n'étouffe pas dans un cachot." (Gabriel Marcel)