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US News Genocide in Rwanda: Félicien Kabuga fixed on his surrender to international justice

10:35  30 september  2020
10:35  30 september  2020 Source:   parismatch.com

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Félicien Kabuga , one of the most wanted suspects of the Rwandan genocide , has been arrested near Paris, the French justice ministry has announced. Mr Kabuga was detained in a dawn raid in Asnières-sur-Seine, where he had been living under a false identity. The International Criminal Tribunal for

Les photos de Félicien Kabuga rayées d'un avis de recherche à Kigali après son arrestation, en mai 2020 © Simon Wohlfahrt Photos of Félicien Kabuga crossed out from a wanted notice in Kigali after his arrest, in May 2020

The Court of Cassation rules on Wednesday on the handing over to international justice of Félicien Kabuga, accused of being the "financier" of the genocide in Rwanda and arrested in May near Paris after twenty-five years on the run.

The highest court of the judiciary must render its decision around 2 p.m. on a priority question of constitutionality (QPC) and the appeal filed by the Rwandan to contest his transfer to Arusha, Tanzania, where the UN tribunal sits who must try him for genocide and crimes against humanity.

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Rwandan genocide suspect Felicien Kabuga was arrested on Saturday near Paris after 25 years on the run, accused of playing a leading role in one of the Kabuga was indicted on genocide charges by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda . How I survived the Rwandan genocide in 1994.

“ Félicien Kabuga is known to have been the financier of the Rwandan genocide ,” French authorities said. Two of his daughters were married to Habyarimana’s sons. The arrest will raise questions about how Kabuga was indicted by the UN international criminal tribunal for Rwanda in 1997 on seven

Félicien Kabuga pendant sa comparution devant la Cour d'appel de Paris, le 20 mai 2020 © Benoit PEYRUCQ Félicien Kabuga during his appearance before the Paris Court of Appeal, May 20, 2020

On June 3, the Paris Court of Appeal, responsible for examining the validity of the arrest warrant issued by the Mechanism for international tribunals (MTPI), had ordered the handing over of the octogenarian to this structure responsible for completing the work of the International Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR).

Arrested on May 16 in Asnières-sur-Seine, in the Parisian suburbs, the old man, 87 years old according to his statements, is notably accused of having participated in the creation of the Hutu Interahamwe militias, the main armed arms of the 1994 genocide which, according to the UN, caused 800,000 deaths, mainly within the Tutsi minority.

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Who is Félicien Kabuga ? Considered the richest man in Rwanda before the 1994 genocide . Made his fortune from tea in the 1970s and ventured into BBC Great Lakes reporter Samba Cyuzuzo says Mr Kabuga 's denial in court, made in Kinyarwanda and translated by an interpreter, were his first public

Carte et chronologie, avec chiffres clés, du génocide de 1994 au Rwanda © Paz PIZARRO Map and chronology, with key figures, of the 1994 genocide in Rwanda

He is also suspected of having contributed in 1993 to the massive purchase of machetes which will be distributed to the militiamen in April 1994, an accusation which supports the thesis of a planning of the genocide, never decided by international justice to the chagrin of Kigali.

The former president of the infamous Radio Télévision Libre des Mille Collines (RTLM), which broadcast calls for the murders of Tutsi, disputes all of the seven charges against him.

- The state of health argument -

Before the Court of Cassation on September 2, his lawyer, Me Louis Boré, first raised a priority question of constitutionality (QPC), arguing that the applicable French law "excessively" limited the prerogatives of the judge with regard to the fundamental rights of the suspect, claimed by international justice, which would violate the Constitution.

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Félicien Kabuga , a businessman indicted for complicity in the Rwandan genocide , was arrested on Saturday after living under a false identity. The Rwandan genocide took place in 1994 and resulted in the deaths of 800,000 people. The arrest "is a reminder to all those responsible for the genocide that

Genocide in Rwanda : Green light for the surrender of Félicien Kabuga to international justice . At the hearing on May 27, lawyers for the businessman however asked the court to suspend his Félicien Kabuga , arrested on May 16 in the Paris suburbs, is notably accused of having created, with

This law only requires the courts to ensure the validity of arrest warrants and to verify the identity of the person arrested before handing him over to the MTPI, without considering the conditions of his transfer and his detention.

The lawyer then invoked the state of health of Mr. Kabuga.

He pointed out that his client, who is said to be suffering from diabetes and hypertension, was also suffering from "leucoaraiosis", an incurable pathology causing him to gradually lose his motor and cognitive functions. This condition, he pleaded, does not allow "to transfer him in satisfactory sanitary conditions" to Arusha, where he must in principle appear.

In its judgment of June 3, the Paris Court of Appeal relied on a medical certificate drawn up by the prison doctor, which certified that Mr. Kabuga had to be transported "by ambulance during extractions" but which did not establish not, according to the court, of incompatibility of his state of health with the detention, nor of contraindication on a transfer.

According to Me Boré, "at no time did the doctor question the transfer between Paris and Arusha".

A few days before the decision of the Court of Cassation, Félicien Kabuga was also extracted at the end of last week from his prison for "medical reasons", corroborating sources told AFP.

Not wishing to comment on the state of health of his client, his other lawyer, Me Emmanuel Altit, told AFP on Tuesday "to hope that the cassation appeal will be accepted and that the request for postponement will be rejected".

The Advocate General for his part advocated rejecting the QPC as the appeal.

If the Court of Cassation followed his advice, France would have one month to hand over Mr. Kabuga to the MTPI.

"We are confident," MTPI prosecutor Serge Brammertz, contacted while in Kigali on September 3, told AFP.

He recalled that as it stood the MTPI was the only court competent to try the fugitive, while Rwandan victims expressed the wish to see him tried in Rwanda, "unless the Security Council (of the UN) decides otherwise ".

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