This is a very chilling testimony of a Rwanda Genocide(Paul Kagame’s aka Pilato(‘s) war crimes survivor. We shall make it our mission in this life to expose this killer and all his friends in crimes against Humanity. We welcome any victim of his crimes to come forward and be a voice to all those innocent lives that he took.
“I have been through Hell, have known horror, and now that I have escaped, I want to testify in the name of all the men and women who did not have my luck and who died in Hell.” – Marie Béatrice Umutesi.
(“Surviving the Slaughter.” Madison, Wisconsin: University of Wisconsin Press. 2004.)
On the night of 27 June 2006, it was warm and dry in Kigali, the capital city of Rwanda. A typical day since it wasn’t rainy season. It was nearly 18:30 and the sun had already settled down below the horizon. Gratefully, the temperature would soon cool down a bit. I rolled out of the bed in my hotel room and trudged up the long winding staircase to the dining room, where Hotel Okapi serves a famous (and delicious) breakfast buffet every morning beginning at 06:30. On this particular evening, I went outside to make a phone call on my portable (cell) phone because the reception emitting from the Mobile Telephone Networks’ (MTN) tower was very difficult to pick up from inside my room. I strolled casually past the front desk and the internet café connected to the hotel. Behind the front desk on the bleach white wall hung a framed official presidential picture of Paul Kagame. Sometimes, I got a strange and irrational sensation the picture itself was watching me as I would walk by. I later learned every business in Rwanda was required to have a framed picture of President Kagame on display. I was also told those who were less enthusiastic about his regime would often put the picture back in the manager’s office instead of in a public place. In contrast, one of the primary schools run by Ibuka1 that I visited in Kigali proudly displayed a very large and regal portrait painting of him over the headmaster’s desk. As I stepped outside the hotel, I immediately turned around to face the hotel, which was opposite the street. Hotel Okapi is a relatively small hotel near the city center next to a plot of land that was boarded off by wooden planks because it was designated to be the site of a new housing complex, one of many already under construction all over the city. Behind the wooden planks was a labyrinth maze of mud homes with aluminum foil roofs where the poorest people that I encountered in the city lived. They all resided on the bottom of the hills that slope away from the city. I made my call and began talking, oblivious to the environment around me. The streets of Kigali were virtually barren after dark every day.
One night, I ventured out after dark and walked south of the hotel down the hill. I only encountered two people along the way. Both of them gave me a nervous glance as they swiftly walked past me in the opposite direction. I later learned that this behavior has been the norm since the Arusha Accords were signed in 1993. As I spoke on the phone, I casually noticed a small red dot appear on the wooden posts. It wasn’t long before it began moving around erratically. It reminded me of those low-power laser pens and key-chains I have seen in the United States (U.S.). Sometimes, young kids use them to drive their teachers crazy in school (but not me of course). Some university professors in the U.S. use them to point things out on overhead projectors during a lecture or presentation. It seemed so grossly out of place that I initially ignored it as an oddity caused by my state of being overly tired. After about ten seconds or so, it disappeared. “See,” I thought, “It was just my imagination.” I continued conversing for a few minutes before I finally turned around to face the street. After I finished turning around, I lifted my gaze and stiffened instantly. Directly across the street in front of me was a black Toyota Landcruiser without any license plates. All its windows were tinted black. I knew instantly it was a government vehicle from the Directorate of Military Intelligence (DMI). I quickly shifted my eyes to glance from left to right without turning my head to see if there was anybody else around. A quick survey revealed the street was completely vacant. No one came running out of the shadows to ambush me. I was alone in a standoff with the vehicle’s occupants. Then, from the passenger-side window facing me (the left-hand side of the vehicle facing the front of the jeep), the same red laser beam shined out brightly and quickly swept across my eyes, blinding me very briefly. It was in that moment I realized it wasn’t my imagination after all. The laser rotated back around and settled squarely on my sternum right where my heart is. It held there steadily in position for several long seconds, and then it blinked out of existence. Suspecting the situation might escalate dramatically if I tried to run away; I kept talking in a normal tone of voice on the phone and did not alert the caller for the time being. I paced back and forth outside the front of the hotel for a few more minutes while keeping a watchful eye on the vehicle. The laser did not appear again and the vehicle had both its engine and headlights turned off. The vehicle’s occupants did not make any moves. I hung up the phone and walked back into the hotel at a normal pace past the front desk and sat down in the dining room at the back of the hotel for several minutes to try and absorb what had just happened. Meanwhile, nobody working at the front desk, in the restaurant, or the internet café said a single word to me the entire time. It was like nothing ever happened. I did not see anyone particularly suspicious in the hotel at the time nor did I hear the vehicle drive off quickly with screeching tires. I slowly went back by the front door and peered outside. The vehicle was gone. It slipped off quietly into the night and I did not see it again that night. Afterwards, I refused to flee the country.
Roughly a week after this incident, I attended the Liberation Day ceremony at Amahoro Stadium on 4 July 2006, where President Kagame came and made his annual speech to the crowd. As was to be expected, the Presidential Guard was stationed at the stadium’s entrances to screen everybody before allowing them passage inside. Their weapons reminded me of the CAR-15s some U.S. Special Forces units used to use. Unmistakably mounted on each Presidential Guard’s rifle was a laser-sighted scope. Though I was only in Rwanda for a very short time, I was able to catch a glimpse of daily life under the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) and its leader Paul Kagame.
I experienced a portion of the same oppressive environment described by Jean-Christophe? Nizeyimana (or “Chris” as he is known to his friends), who lived in this climate of oppression for several years. Chris is a proud umuhutu who is not an active politician, ex-soldier, or former militia member. Instead, he is a self-proclaimed “free thinker” who rejects the RPF’s authority and refuses to accept Paul Kagame’s genocide dogma and the “official” version of what happened in 1994. He is also what the RPF would call a “Hutu intellectual.” That is to say, he is a multilingual Hutu who attended a university overseas, where he earned a master’s degree in economics at Moscow University.
Chris is a survivor in every sense of the word. Not only did he survive several RPF massacres carried out in the north of his country in 1993-1994, he also survived the Zairian2 refugee camps near Goma and in Mugunga and is an eyewitness to the horrendous crimes committed in the RPF-controlled zone. Though he is originally from the Jenda (Nyabihu District) of the Ruhengeri Prefecture,3 one of the areas hit hardest by the Rwandan Patriotic Army (RPA),4 he lived in Gisenyi during 1993-1994, where he was a professor at the High Institute of Management and Computing. This town, across the border from Goma, Zaire, was an area journalists and United Nations Assistance Mission for Rwanda (UNAMIR) peacekeepers did not go during the genocide.5 Today, he lives exiled from his homeland. He was once called to testify at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) but decided to refuse the summons. Now, for the first time ever, he is going public with his testimony. Chris has two general themes in this interview. One is a harrowing personal account of the things he experienced and witnessed in Rwanda and Zaire. The other is a unique insight into the broader issues affecting Rwandans and the Diaspora community as a whole. In providing this testimony, Chris aspires to dispel the many widely disseminated lies and disinformation surrounding his country’s genocide and the RPF’s admonishment of innocent Hutu for their own political gains.
He implores the international community to uphold the standards of law and prosecute all those who have committed grave criminal acts against humanity in Rwanda. It is only through this act that he feels all the traumatized people of Rwanda can truly begin a national reconciliation and healing process. Chris rejects the RPF’s one-sided version of events and wants the international community to facilitate an independent, rational, and impartial investigation of the Rwandan genocide. Lastly, Chris wants this interview to serve as a memorial to all the forgotten victims of the RPF’s crimes and dedicates this testimony in their beloved memory, particularly the many members of his family that were lost. Contrary to popular media depictions, it was not just the Tutsi who lost everything in the genocide. Untold thousands of innocent Hutu and Tutsi were victims of the horrendous violence that engulfed Rwanda beginning in 1990. I would like to dedicate my efforts in this endeavor not only to all the innocent Rwandan, Congolese, Burundian, Ugandan, and Tanzanian victims, but also to Chris for his bravery in coming forward with his story and his humbleness in sharing such trauma openly with me.
A special thank you also goes out to A.F. and T.H. Hopefully I will be able to thank you properly someday. The following interview is a transcript of a four-hour interview recorded in early May 2007. It was supplemented with clarification questions delivered through several subsequent correspondences with Mr. Nizeyimana. Since English is not Mr. Nizeyimana’s first language, I changed some verb tenses and the plurality of certain words to make the manuscript more readable. Therefore, the transcript is not verbatim. Mr. Nizeyimana reviewed and approved the final draft to ensure the intended meaning of all his words was intact and the native Kinyarwandan words and names were spelled correctly. It is also important for the reader to understand the RPF changed the names of the prefectures, communes, cells, districts, and streets across most of the country. Chris has deliberately chosen to use the old names so as not to confuse anyone who decides to investigate his claims.
David Barouski (DB) : I’m going start from the beginning and try to progress chronologically. I’d like to start at the beginning of the Rwandan War (1990-1993). In 1990, when the RPF invaded Rwanda from Uganda, what was it like in your country? Did the Rwandans know the RPF were going to invade?
Jean-Christophe Nizeyimana (JCN): Tutsi first fled the country in 1959 to Uganda mostly, but also to other neighboring countries like Burundi and Zaire. This was during the so-called “Hutu Revolution” after the Tutsi monarchy was removed. It wasn’t because they (Tutsi) didn’t accept the country. No. The Tutsi left because they didn’t accept living under a republic regime where the people who were their slaves during the monarchy (Hutu) are now free to choose their own destiny and hold political office. So, in 1979, a political party was formed by the Tutsi in exile.6 Most of the members were in (Yoweri) Museveni’s administration in Uganda because they helped the NRM (National Resistance Movement)7 take power in Uganda. They were fighting in Mozambique with Museveni, where cruelties, vandalism, torture, and rape became their daily job.8 Those people who made up the RPF leadership: General Fred Rwigema, (Chris) Bunyenyezi, and (Peter) Bayingana…all of them were there and when they came back to Uganda and took power, Museveni appointed them into his administration. That’s where Paul Kagame started his career as the Chief of the Ugandan Internal Security and Intelligence Service where he interrogated, tortured, and killed Ugandans who were real or imagined opponents of the NRM. After Museveni took power, he promised he would help the Tutsis take back Rwanda. That’s why, in the late 1980s, they (RPF) started spreading propaganda against President Habyarimana to prepare for war. The RPF created a radio station called Radio Muhabura that they used for propaganda and spreading rumors. They also printed newspapers in Kampala and used RPF infiltrators to sell the papers in Kigali to spread these lies and rumors with the intent of inciting riots against Habyarimana so that later, lynching would take place throughout the country. The aggression officially started on October 1st, 1990, in the north of my country near the region I was born, where Rwanda has its border with Uganda. The aggression was aided by the same pro-RPF press and radio stations I mentioned that were sponsored by RPF backers, including the U.S., U.K. (United Kingdom) and Belgium. They told the world at the beginning of the war that the RPF was only fifteen kilometers from the Kigali to create panic and confusion. Their propaganda aimed to hammer the international community with lies. The propaganda also spread the idea that it was not an aggression from an outside country, but a civil war.
DB: So it was covering up the illegality of the war, the fact members of the Ugandan army had defected and were invading a sovereign nation.
JCN: Exactly. Exactly. What was important, the RPF had to plan something like this carefully. It had to be labeled a civil war. If it was about foreign countries, a war between foreign aggressors and Rwandans, it was going to be really difficult to say Hutu extremists planned the genocide in advance. That’s why, for the RPF, the genocide was planned at the beginning the war. They started by admonishing and prejudicing Hutus through their propaganda. They used all kinds of harsh words to create a rift between Hutu and Tutsi while also dividing the north and south of the country as part of their main strategy.
DB: Are you saying you believe the RPF planned to incite genocide and began to do so back when they invaded in 1990?
JCN: Yes, because the final aggression that started on April 6th was the final attack, but since the beginning, they had planned to seize power and in order to seize power it was not in their interest to join a transitional government because they would eventually lose the elections anyway. Imagine any country, anywhere you go, the United States or any country from Europe, Asia…you can’t find a minority ruling the country. The only way for the RPF to do this, they had to find a shortcut that could help them seize and retain power and they have to use force and fear to maintain it. They also had to get support from all the countries that had their own interests in the region. When the aggression started, the RPF told the world they wanted to bring back democracy to Rwanda. This was a smokescreen to hide their real agenda: minority rule. They got financial aid, advising, and military training from the U.K. and the United States through Uganda.
DB: Do you know who specifically was financing the RPF in the beginning, regardless of if they are foreign nationals or Rwandans?
JCN: U.S. and U.K. multinationals supported the RPF so that they could get access to loot Central Africa’s mineral resources, particularly in Zaire. To reach this goal, the RPF had to be connected to the Clinton Administration because they were the most influential in the U.N. There were also organizations that supported the Tutsi refugees based in the United States. Can you imagine the shameful attitude of the U.S. administration’s representative Herman Cohen against the Rwandan nation? He said that President Habyarimana’s body, the state symbol of Rwanda, would be dragged through the streets of Kigali and his government would be tried by a special tribunal.9
DB: When did he say this?
JCN: Before the 6th of April. It was incredible to hear that. As a U.S. representative, you know, he had to justify what was going to happen within one month, two months, three months, and so on. Also, the aggression was an opportunity for U.S. multinationals linked to the Bush (George Herbert Walker) administration to get access to Congolese and Rwandan mineral resources. For more information, just refer to my website10 and you will find out who those multinationals were that kept busy by looting in both countries during RPF aggressions in Rwanda and the Congo as well. To get an idea of the scope of the war, it is very easy to get information and details in Addis Ababa, where you will find people who were hired to fight for the RPF. They will tell you that the U.S. Embassy in Ethiopia recruited foreign fighters for the RPF.11 These soldiers came from Somalia, Eritrea, Ethiopia, and South Sudan to fight against the Rwandan Government. Obviously, there is no need to say that the 1990-1994 war was a civil war as it was described before and after the RPF seized power. Even today there are Somalis living in Rwanda with full Rwandan citizenship and still others who were disappointed and left for Europe. That is why, at the end of the day, the CIA (Central Intelligence Agency) said Paul Kagame was linked to Al-Qaeda? without giving more detailed information.12 Many of those guys fighting with the RPF were actually terrorists, but that label was not used with those countries at that time because it was before September the eleventh, 2001!
DB: So they fought along with the RPF? What year did this happen?
JCN: Just after the assassination of President Juvenal Habyarimana, on April 6th, 1994, when the final aggression was launched. There were Somalis, Ethiopians, Eritreans, South Sudanese, you know, and also there were soldiers from the Burundian Army under the command of Colonel Bikomagu attacking from the south of Rwanda and Tanzanian soldiers were occupying part of the eastern region of Rwanda.13 You remember that the Tanzanians fought with Museveni to get rid of Idi Amin.14 Yet, the campaign was still to talk about civil war in Rwanda, which was not true.
DB: So Somali fighters were helping the RPF?
JCN: Yes, and as I said before, many of them are still there. Also, some are back in Ethiopia today and if you ask them, they will openly tell you they have been fighting in Rwanda.15
DB: Let me ask you this. Now, as you probably know, the United States military was in Somalia, in Mogadishu and in October 1993, 18 U.S. military members were killed and the U.S. withdrew. Later, while the genocide was already underway and the Clinton Administration knew about it because of reports from the State Department and satellite photographs,16 President Clinton created PDD-25 (Presidential Decision Directive),17 which essentially said the United States could not participate in any peacekeeping operations unless there was a geostrategic interest. When the U.S. failed to reinforce the United Nations (U.N.) peacekeeping mission and eventually reduced its size, PDD-25 was later used as an excuse because the U.S. supposedly had no strategic interests in Rwanda.18
JCN: That’s not true.
DB: You don’t believe that at all?
JCN: No, I don’t believe that because the people who said that are the same people who supported the RPF through financial aid and military support, the same ones who said they had no interest in the region. When President Clinton decided not to send help to Rwanda…you know you can browse on the Internet or ask people who were linked to the U.S. administration and you will find out that Bill Clinton knew exactly what was happening in Rwanda but decided not to intervene due to a hidden agenda. A U.N. intervention would have stopped the fighting and cut off the RPF’s main objective: to seize power and keep it by force.
DB: Do you believe they (Clinton Administration) purposefully decided not to intervene in Rwanda and not to allow the U.N. to have a meaningful intervention?
JCN: Yes, but not because it was like you explained to me. A peacekeeping force meant an end to hostilities against Tutsi civilians and thus the RPF rebels could not seize power by force because they told the world they were fighting to stop Hutus from killing Tutsis. There is no denying that after they (Americans) refused to intervene, they aided the RPF by using mass media committed to copying and pasting the same chosen images and the same information to support Paul Kagame as he was fighting “to stop the genocide” perpetrated by Hutu militias or “extremists” as the press called them.
DB: When the genocide broke out, there were people in the Security Council who said, you know, we need… General Dallaire was asking for five thousand five hundred troops, I believe. After a number of delays by the U.S., the RPF, and the U.K., it was proposed to create a safe zone in the north of Gikongoro, I believe. It was going to be an operation similar in planning to Operation Turquoise, which was created later by the French. The U.N. was wanted to let all civilians to gather in a neutral zone where the U.N. soldiers would protect them and let the Rwandan Government negotiate a ceasefire with the RPF while the civilians were out of the way and could not be harmed. Now what happened was, first of all, General Kagame told General Dallaire that any U.N. force deployed in Rwanda would be taken as aggressors and therefore would be attacked by the RPF. He told Dallaire that too his face during a meeting, the same meeting he said the RPF would not cooperate with the U.N. if Booh-Booh? remained in the country.19
JCN: That’s what Kagame said.
DB: And Rwanda had a seat in the Security Council at the time.
JCN: I remember. But also remember that, at that time, we had the so-called “La Baule” meeting where French President François Mitterrand asked African nations to accept democratic values. This demand also went to President Habyarimana and Rwanda. The opposition parties in Rwanda that formed were used by the RPF to divide the country and they used the opportunity to talk about democracy while the RPF and its allies were busy planning regime change. They had to create an impractical situation so that the parameters to urge the war to resume would be available. In this context, the U.N Special Representative, the guy you just mentioned…
JCN: Yes, Jacques Roger Booh-Booh? tried to be neutral in the conflict. He tried to get a ceasefire, but at the same time, General Romeo Dallaire did whatever he could to hide RPF operations during the calm period right after the Arusha Accords were signed. Ongoing killings and awful massacres committed by the RPF in the north were not reported to the international community and no investigation ever started by UNAMIR was finished. The RPF continued its preparations for war in the demilitarized zone whereas strict controls were enforced in the government zone.
DB: If I can back up a bit, you mentioned the propaganda war the RPF started in the late 1980s. Can you provide details on how this worked?
JCN: Well, the radio broadcast into Rwandan territory while the newspapers and magazines were printed in Uganda and sent by infiltrators to Kigali and other parts of the country.20 How this was done was actually very easy. After the Arusha Accords, it was agreed that an RPF division of six hundred soldiers would be stationed in Kigali at the parliament building. Instead of having six hundred, they eventually had-as people will tell you-thousands of RPF infiltrators in Kigali. They were escorted by UNAMIR forces in Kigali and other parts of the country, especially in the Kibuye Province. General Romeo Dallaire told the Rwandan Government that RPF transports from Kigali to Mulindi21 and from Mulindi to Kigali were for water provisions! This claim has nothing to do with reality. They were delivering ammunition and supplies. Once the troops and infiltrators were in place, they organized the RPF fronts and supply lines in Kigali, from Mulindi to the CND (Conseil National de Développement) parliament building, and from the CND to different districts of Kigali.
DB: Were they were in civilian clothes?
JCN: Yes and other infiltrators were, of course, hiding inside the Parliament building where nobody else was allowed to go in. There was no control at all; no mechanisms in place to allow both parties equal rights to check each other’s positions. What is very dramatic is that only the Rwandan Government was checked for violations of the Accords. We can’t forget that the U.N. was supposed to come to Rwanda as a neutral party, a party to help Rwandans reach and enforce a peace agreement. Unfortunately, the U.N. commander, Mr. Dallaire was totally under RPF sway, control and command.
DB: That’s quite a claim. How could you say that?
JCN: The Bangladeshi and Ghanaian representatives who were there can always testify to what I say.
DB: The UNAMIR soldiers?
JCN: Yes. They described how RPF military officers always held meetings with Mr. Dallaire.
DB: Were they private meetings?
JCN: They were at UNAMIR headquarters and the RPF used the HQs for their own military means.
DB: What was said at these meetings?
JCN: They shared maps so the RPF would know exactly where Rwandan Government soldiers were positioned in the country. It was to keep track of their movements. Always after such meetings, there were attacks on the Rwandan Government’s side of the demilitarized zone by the RPF attachment, the one inside the FAR (Armed Forces of Rwanda) zone. It was very easy for the RPF because there were different units-including UNAMIR-that had to go and check both sides for violations of the Arusha Accords. However, instead of doing their job, they gathered information to give to the RPF.
DB: Let me be clear, you’re saying that General Dallaire frequently shared military intelligence with RPF officers?
DB: Which RPF officers did he meet with?
JCN: There were many different people, but I can mention Charles Kayonga. That one I know for sure because he commanded the RPF Advance Military Division stationed at the Kimihurura Parliament Building. French journalist and investigator Pierre Pean gave more details on this issue.
DB: Why would General Dallaire do such a thing?
JCN: Because it was his commitment. His reasons are known by those who financially and militarily supported the RPF. He was committed to this because he was sent by the French-Canadian? Government, the U.K., and the U.S. He had to cover up RPF crimes and do whatever he could to let the RPF seize power in Rwanda. He was committed to help the RPF rebels by all means including the sharing of details about the Rwandan Government policies and the FAR positions. He also allowed RPF ammunition and fighters to infiltrate Kigali.
DB: Did General Dallaire know the genocide was going to happen?
JCN: As part of a pre-arranged agenda, he knew he had to talk about plans for mass killings of Tutsis before the genocide started so that the RPF could seize power in Rwanda. This could also be used by the U.S. and U.K. as an explanation for their support of the RPF because if they tell the public the RPF stopped the genocide, everybody thinks their country gave military aid to the good guys. As I told you before, without such a massive crime committed by the other side in the conflict, the RPF would have been unable to seize power through democratic elections where both ethnic groups would have representatives to supervise the elections. Dallaire himself even said that he cannot believe a genocide against the Tutsi were planned.22 Many people remember General Dallaire said he had information a genocide was being planned according to a controversial fax he said he sent to U.N. headquarters. Later, that fax could not be found anywhere. It was a lie when he said he sent a fax to the U.N, he knew there was no fax. The Canadian Government adopted a strategy of protecting him from prosecution when he became a Canadian senator. If you need more information about that, please read the findings of Cameroonian journalist Charles Onana. Let me say again, Romeo Dallaire never sent that fax to the U.N.
DB: That fax, they called it “The Genocide Fax,” and a copy of it was later sent over to a reporter at the New Yorker named Phillip Gourevitch. He wrote a number of articles on it and it really launched his career. He got a book deal out of it.
JCN: Yeah, I remember the name. He was the only public person at the time to have the information on the fax!23
DB: The person who gave the information contained the fax, which talked about Hutu militias’ plans to kill Tutsis and Belgian peacekeepers, was an acquaintance of Faustin Twagiramungu,24 correct?
JCN: He was an RPF infiltrator by the name of Jean-Pierre? Turatsinze.25
DB: Yea, that’s the name I have too. What can you tell me about him?
JCN: The guy was Twagiramungu’s informant. Faustin Twagiramungu had no idea the guy was working for the RPF. The informant told him Interahamwe26 are going to kill Tutsi. He said that he was one of the core members of the Interahamwe youth organization of the MRND (National Republican Movement for Democracy and Development),27 so he knew about everything they were planning. He said he knew the ruling government was going to kill Tutsis and I believe, according to Twagiramungu´s statement, the reality was that this wasn’t true. He was being manipulated by the RPF. After that, people found out Dallaire did not send that fax. It was actually sent by a military officer from the U.K. The fax that Dallaire did send to the U.N. was never found as I said before. Later, they did find a fax at U.N. headquarters, but the fax said the sender’s name was a U.K. military officer and not General Dallaire.
DB: Do you know his name?
JCN: I cannot tell you right now, but I will find it.
DB: So was Mr. Turatsinze an Interahamwe or was he an RPF infiltrator?
JCN: Obviously, he was an infiltrator. He was not working for the MRND. He tried to convince Twagiramungu that he was not just an ordinary militia member, but a well-informed and high-ranking member. Twagiramungu himself said he was manipulated by this man. Why did the informant come forward at a time the country was talking about adopting democratic values and ending the war? Once the fax was sent, nobody was talking about the peace process. It was about the preparations for genocide now. The information in the fax changed the focus of the international community, it disrupted the peace process. Since Mr. Turatsinze was an infiltrator, he was killed by the RPF after he talked to Twagiramungu because he knew too much information and his job was finished. As you yourself know, the RPF kills people who know too much information when they are done using them. This is Paul Kagame’s policy.
DB: Sorry, but I have to back up a bit. We were talking about those people from the Horn of Africa.
JCN: The Ethiopians, Somalis, Eritreans…
DB: Yea. How did that relationship come about with the RPF? Is there a cultural or ethnic link to the Tutsi refugees in Uganda?
JCN: People say all of them, Ethiopians, Eritreans, and Tutsi came from the same Hamitic race. However, pro-RPF philosophers argue that there are no Bantu, Hamitic, or Nilotic races. The point of this philosophy is to say there are no ethnic groups in Rwanda, only Rwandans. The president, err, the Prime Minister of Ethiopia…Meles? Zenawi, and the other one, the President of Eritrea…President? Afwerki, together with President Kagame were all hailed to the world as the new leaders of Africa by Prime Minister Tony Blair at the U.N. The reality is that these guys were chosen because there was political conflict between western countries and France in Africa at the time. These three were backed by western powers against France. These so-called `leaders`, in reality, are criminals that are ready to serve their backers’ interests at any cost. The only way they can stay in power is to have a U.S.-backing, so they do whatever is necessary for the U.S. administration even if their own people die.
DB: Now, I have to back up even farther now, to 1990. In 1990, Paul Kagame was not leading the RPF when they first came into your country. It was General Fred Rwigema. Did Rwandans know Paul Kagame was in the United States and if so, what did they think of that?28 How did that make Rwandans view him? Did it change anything?
JCN: Ok. At the beginning of the war in 1990, Rwandans heard on the radio that the RPF was headed by Rwigema. After about the 4th of October, he was killed and they said that he was replaced by Paul Kagame, who was in the U.S. Kagame came back to Uganda to replace him and supervise all RPF military operations, but ordinary RPF soldiers did not want him to lead.
DB: Why was that?
JCN: Because they knew him as a criminal. Referring to his background as the chief of Uganda’s Security and Intelligence Division before the invasion of Rwanda, he was the one who tortured and killed many Ugandans, as I said before. Also as I said before, when Kagame returned to Uganda and brought the RPF back into Rwanda, the aggression was not shown as a Ugandan invasion, not as an outside aggressor, though these men were all from the Ugandan Army. There is no way you can talk about that as a civil war because those Tutsis fought for the Ugandan Army for many years. What is also difficult is the fact that the ICTR has, up-to-now, never shown any real proof that Habyarimana planned a genocide. I believe the definition of the word “genocide” was negotiated to support the RPF leadership because the U.N. Security Council said that deciding on the definition of genocide was the ICTR’s decision even before the trials began. This meant the U.N. said there was a genocide, but it was a genocide that had yet to be defined by the ICTR! In my understanding, the conclusion made on the definition had to be given after the chief judge declared that a genocide was committed in Rwanda. One or two years ago, RPF backers asked the ICTR to decide, without sufficient evidence, that the genocide was committed only by Hutus against Tutsis! I totally disagree.
DB: Do you personally believe there was a genocide?
JCN: I believe, I still believe that the RPF planned for mass killings of civilians and they also planned to kill many Hutu in Rwanda. I believe the RPF planned the genocide one hundred percent. I’m not talking about the Rwandan Tutsi genocide; I’m talking about the Rwandan genocide that includes both Tutsi and Hutu, the real definition of the Rwandan genocide. Tutsis were killed as planned by the RPF leadership and these killings were supposed to be a bridge for Paul Kagame to seize power in Rwanda, a sine qua non condition to seize power in Rwanda.
DB: With respect, let me ask you this. Do you believe or do you deny the Rwandan Armed Forces, militia like the Interahamwe, and members of the gendarmes killed thousands of Tutsi?
JCN: I believe Interahamwe were involved in the killing of many innocent Tutsi and also some Hutu for political reasons. At the same time, like I told you, and everybody knows, the numbers of Tutsi killed does not correspond with the numbers given by the RPF Government. This is Kagame’s scenario. After the U.N. gave their figures on the number of people killed, the RPF said they would have their own investigation and then they gave their own numbers. First of all, I should tell you that very few estimates were given. The U.N. said from 100,000 to 500,000 total were killed and independent organizations like some NGOs (Non-Governmental Organizations) said 250,000 were killed. Then the RPF gave its own number and said about 800,000 Tutsis were killed, a number that was widely broadcasted in the U.S., U.K., and Belgian press. At the same time, I want to know… if you know about Rwanda, you know that many people were killed and according to the RPF version, all of them were either Tutsis or politically moderate Hutu. How many Tutsis were living in Kigali according to the 1993 census that was done? The real truth is that Hutu were the majority living in Kigali. At the same time, where are my brothers and sisters!? Where are my friends!? All of them were…they talk about moderates. Why this confusion? Why are they saying all these people were Tutsis or `moderate` Hutus? What I have just said, I am very confident in. The RPF will never investigate. The RPF will never accept an independent investigation and they want us to take this as an axiom. I know this one hundred percent. If anyone believes what I am saying is not true, let’s go and open an investigation! Let’s use DNA to find out what really happened to my people, to other people, to my fellow citizens! DNA was used in Bosnia and Croatia. Why not in Rwanda? We all want to know who really got killed. Who killed who? In Kigali and Kigali´s neighborhoods, in the northwestern region where I am from, where most of the people died, you had a Hutu majority. Where I am from, in Ruhengeri, there weren’t many Tutsi living there and nobody ever talks about how many Hutu were killed there from 1990 up to today. We need to know the whole truth. Against conventional wisdom, I believe that the victims of this violence were fairly evenly distributed between Hutu and Tutsi, taking into account the total percentage of each ethnic group. According to some estimates, the majority of the victims may even have been Hutu. There is widely accepted demographic data showing that there simply wasn’t a large enough number of Tutsi living in Rwanda at the time to account for all the reported deaths.29 Definitive numbers aren’t possible because the death tolls vary so much. The world has not yet confronted the true scale of Hutu deaths from 1990 to1994, and from 1995 up to now beginning with the Kibeho massacre in 1995, and including the 1996, 1997 and 1998 massacres of returning refugees, which totaled about three and a half million deaths.
DB: Where were you in 1993?
JCN: In 1993, I was in Rwanda.
DB: Where in Rwanda?
JCN: Gisenyi, because I was teaching at the Gisenyi High Institute of Management and Computing, called the Institut Saint Fidele in French. I was working as the chief academic officer.
DB: Can you describe the February offensive of 1993 by the RPF?
JCN: Oh, yes, I will never forget that. I was in Gisenyi at that time. I heard that the RPF were attacking Ruhengeri. That’s my town, my hometown. People said many people were gathered into houses. Then RPF rebels used grenades and threw them inside the houses. You had women and kids in those houses that were blown up into pieces. Nevertheless, I was lucky because, at that time, I had to attend a marriage in Ruhengeri. A friend of mine, ok? Laurent Uwimana.
JCN: I was in Ruhengeri the day before the attack, on February 7th, that is why, I cannot forget it.
DB: I see.
JCN: The family I was celebrating with, all of them got killed. Laurent’s girlfriend, parents, and relatives were all killed.
DB: You lost so many friends there…..
JCN: If you want, I can tell you names, ok? I don’t want to hide anything, it´s about the truth; it’s about Paul Kagame´s cruelties. Many of my friends and classmates were killed over there. I knew one friend, Jotham Dusabimana, who graduated at Moscow University where I attended. He went to see his girlfriend in Ruhengeri on February 8th and he never came back. Ok. I went back to Gisenyi the day before because I had to work in the office at the College the next day, but I know how they got killed. Some of them were even crucified like Jesus Christ. They killed ordinary people to make everyone afraid so they would flee the region. The RPF needed people to flee so infiltrators could blend in with the displaced people and gather information.
DB: So the RPF put people in different camps around the country and then they hid spys with the refugees?
JCN: Yes, the displaced people.
DB: I see.
JCN: There were thousands who were displaced and killed and there is no report on what happened in the Ruhengeri and Byumba prefectures. Workers sent to investigate were killed by the RPF. Unfortunately, there is also no report about that incident. Thousands were killed there. The RPF separated men from women and put them in separate houses before burning them all down using grenades and high artillery. Thousands fled to Nyacyonga Camp. Shortly after the displaced Rwandans gathered there, Paul Kagame himself arrived at the camp and took a machine gun and shot the kids and women in the neighboring market. Other RPF soldiers killed hundreds of displaced people from Byumba and Kibungo prefectures. People were crucified and pregnant women had their stomach cut open. The fetuses were given to their supposed fathers before they were killed by akandoya.1 Many were killed with an agafuni.2
DB: Are you saying Paul Kagame did this personally? He killed those people?
JCN: Yes. Personally…and when I see him getting a visa, going to the U.S…. it’s shameful! When I see Americans…..I understand they don’t get the right information from institutions and universities, but, you know… it’s shameful. I cannot believe that such a criminal would be granted a Doctorate of Law degree by a U.S. university….it’s not possible. People who were killed that day in February…who knows about that? Who knows about them? Nobody. Americans know nothing about that. I would like to let Americans know about the extreme cruelty of Paul Kagame. He killed willingly and tortured people…he is more a criminal than a statesman. If I can give a kind of a…. it’s serious. It’s very serious. If someone doesn’t believe me, let’s go have an independent investigation right now. It’s very easy to get information. Have it not be under RPF supervision and then go and tell people that you are part of a team investigating what happened in Rwanda. Right now, investigators only get information from one source, from one side, from RPF leaders and RPF party members.
DB: What was Ruhengeri like after the attack?
JCN: After the attack…well, there was only wreckage. People said the town was destroyed one hundred percent. The prison was destroyed and, ah, the hospitals were also destroyed. The hospital was run by a group of French doctors and it was a modern hospital as far as I remember, with modern equipment, experienced workers, you know, and after that everything was destroyed. Many people fled from the hospital to the university, were many students were killed. Others fled to Kigali and Butare. That’s why the university in Ruhengeri shut down. Then, Paul Kagame announced on Radio Muhabura, “Those who are now displaced, I’m going to find them and all of them are going to be dumped into Lake Kivu.”
DB: He announced this on the radio personally?
JCN: Yes, he did. I remember it well. Many others can confirm what I say because they also heard the broadcast. He wanted to kill them all.
DB: Now, you were still in Gisenyi at the time, correct?
DB: You left Ruhengeri the day before the RPF came?
JCN: You mean Ruhengeri? I left the evening they attacked! 4:00 P.M…ok. I went back to Gisenyi because I had to work at the university the next day. That evening at 9:00, the same night I left to go home, the Byumba Prefecture was attacked by the RPF. The next day, they arrived in Ruhengeri Prefecture.
DB: Can you describe what happened to you after the attack on Ruhengeri?
JCN: After the attack, I was really shaken up and I couldn’t sleep. I couldn’t go there and my people, my friend who I mentioned, Jotham and his girlfriend were reported killed. Laurent’s girlfriend told me that her parents were killed that same night. I could not believe I was there. I knew that Jotham would never be back. Those images still cause me to hallucinate sometimes.
DB: He was from Gisenyi also?
JCN: No. He was from Ruhengeri, from Jenda, from the countryside just like me. The RPF also killed Philippe Gakwerere, the Inspector of Mining along with his family during these attacks. They killed a classroom full of students in Musanze School. Women and children were killed in Nyamagumba. In Nyarutovu Commune, over several days, hundreds were killed. They even killed patients at the hospital in Kinigi Commune. Many died in Ngarama in Byumba Prefecture. There was another guy, Barengayabo, President of the Appeals Court; he was killed with his wife and children on February 8th. One time before that, he escaped death because he spent the night in another town. That’s why he was able to survive. Then he went back home, I don’t exactly know the details, but I had information from Seth Sendashonga about it because he was a friend of mine after he fled to Kenya. He called me and asked me to work with him. The day he was killed by the RPF, when I learned he was killed by RPF in Nairobi, I had told him that I was not comfortable to go out of the country. After that, when he got killed, I couldn’t sleep. I learned so much from him. I still have some of his documents here.
DB: Why did Mr. Sendashonga leave the RPF? I mean, he had been with them for quite some time….
JCN: First of all, Seth Sendashonga was a Hutu who was believed to be one of the main RPF figures before and after the RPF seized power. I asked him the same question.
DB: Right. He was a Hutu.
JCN: Yes, and it was very difficult for me to trust him. When he first called me, I told him, “I heard about what you said all the time when I was in the refugee camps near Goma, so I don’t want to get involved with you. I cannot trust you.” He told me, “Jean-Christophe, I understand your position, but you cannot say that what I said and what I have done was really wrong. I really believed we (RPF) were bringing democracy to Rwanda, but I found out that it’s not possible under Kagame’s rule. That’s why I left and I tried to save myself after I found out I was tricked. It is not possible to implement democratic objectives so I decided to find another way to liberate our country.” That’s what he told me. He was a brilliant mind. He prefaced the RPF membership’s Umuryango. Before he died, we met every day in Nairobi in different places and worked on ways to bring democratic values to Rwanda. To reach this goal, we have to first inform the international community about what happened. He even told me he was originally supposed to be the president of Rwanda. That’s what he wanted me to understand.
DB: Did you believe him at the time?
JCN: (Pauses) Yes. According to the job he did for RPF and after I realized his determination to tell the whole truth, yes, I did believe him.
DB: Do you think they promised him the presidency to get him to work for them?
JCN: Yes. They promised him, but once his job was finished, he became disposable to Kagame. Paul Kagame did not want him to be president. Paul Kagame said, “I will use those Hutu to reach my goal.” After that, Paul Kagame publicly announced that everybody is nothing, but he meant Hutu are nothing. Once his Hutu allies are useless to him, they are thrown into prison or killed. He knew too much information. Seth was killed on May 14th around 4:00 pm at the Nairobi round-a-bout from the Gigili U.N. headquarters. I was not there with him, but we were supposed to meet that very same evening. If I was with him…I don’t know what would have happened to me.
DB: One of the more memorable things to me was when the ICTR witnesses like Mr. Sendashonga starting getting killed outside of Rwanda, even in Europe and the international community did nothing publicly to investigate the murders. Specifically, I’m actually referring to Mr. Juvenal Uwillingiyimana, who was killed in Brussels.3 Later, they found his naked body in a canal.
JCN: Oh yea, I remember, yes, a tragic story.
DB: He was executed differently in that his hands were cut off. What was the significance of that? Was it a message?
JCN: Ok, yes. I don’t know if you have details on Kagame’s strategy… I told you that the genocide was negotiated. Since the genocide was negotiated, it had to be labeled. You must have a label, a definition. You have to maintain it, you have to prepare, and you have to do whatever you can to reinforce that label, that definition among the targeted people. Ok. In that context, the RPF and Paul Kagame asked Rwandans to testify against their own relatives and against the former government so that every single testimony refers to the genocide as the definition the RPF wanted the world to see; that only Hutu extremists killed Tutsis. Paul Kagame’s strategy has always been to recreate what happened to fit into his scenario, to have people testify and say that these people on trial at the ICTR are guilty and thus they have to be thrown in prison for life or be killed. Most importantly, genocide must be recognized as a terrible crime and the perpetrators must only be Hutus. The prisoners had to accept they were guilty and some of them were even released after they gave false testimonies against other, more well-known prisoners, political and government officials. If a prisoner refuses to accept their guilt, especially a well-known prisoner, the RPF sometimes paid people to give false testimony against those who refused to cooperate. Some prisoners who said nothing or refused to declare their guilt were tortured until they admitted their guilt. Also, they were threatened by ICTR investigators, “If you don’t do this, your wife and your kids will be killed, and then you will be killed too.” This is just what happened to Uwilingiyimana.
DB: So the removal of his hands was part of the torture he endured to force him to cooperate. Was that the message to the Rwandan community?
JCN: To the Rwandan community, it means that, if you are asked to testify against your friends, parents, whatever, you have to do it. If you don’t cooperate, you will be killed. Nobody can deny that the RPF has death squads flourishing in Europe. I am afraid the European countries are not able to protect us against these RPF death squads. They even let RPF killers come and search for those who are saying anything other than Kagame’s scenario. We say that we cannot…I just want to emphasize the fact that I will never accept the scenario as told by the RPF. They know Paul Kagame cannot tolerate opponents, especially those who challenge him about the genocide. He wants everybody to see the genocide only how he defines it. That guy Uwilingiyimana, he worked closely with Habyarimana. I mean, he was a former minister in Habyarimana’s administration and was believed to be his close friend. People also said he was close to the so-called “Akazu”4 meaning that he knew everything and was an important figure. You should know that the term Akazu is really just another label to characterize and qualify the enemy so his testimony would back up the idea that the genocide was planned only by Hutu extremists. He was called to testify and was told to accept the RPF’s version of the genocide story. He was told to confirm that Hutu planned the genocide in advance and killed Tutsis. He refused. He said he would never accept this. After they found out he was not willing to change his mind, they unfortunately decided to torture and kill him. The people guilty of threatening Uwilingiyimana were from the U.N. and working for the ICTR at the time. They were two Canadians, Richard Renaud5 and another guy named Rejean Tremblay,6 along with a Belgian guy named André Delvaux.7 Later, I saw on T.V. Tremblay and another person I don’t want to mention here together with Louise Arbour,8 and they were talking about how they were working with the ICTR to track down Hutu and force them to testify. It was incredible!9
DB: Now, so I get this correct, the ICTR workers investigating Mr. Uwilingiyimana were the ones on the T.V.?
JCN: Yes. This plan started with a guy named Akayesu who was being tried in Arusha.10 He was forced to testify to things in which he himself did not believe in. He also was forced to sign a document. If he did not sign it, he was told he would be killed. The investigators told him that he would be released or get a very short time of imprisonment if he signed it. Everyone should also know about the hate speech of Paul Kagame given this April in Murambi. He said he did not kill enough Hutu in 1994. He actually admitted he is trying to think of a way to carry this out again. Then, only one or two weeks after his speech, there were killings in southern Rwanda near Butare, in the previous Mbazi Commune, and in other places. Then, his speech transcript was censored and changed on the Internet. Other places removed the audio file of his speech from their websites.
DB: I didn’t see any reports about the killings. I did not know about that.
JCN: I have heard the killings were carried out by Jean de Dieu Mucyo. No reports have been given about it in the papers. In the same context as Akayesu, there are men and women who are specially trained to give false testimony, like the well-known Kimisagara accusers. There are men and women from Kimisagara, Bugesera, and Kibuye who are brought to Kigali to be specially trained for that. This started after Hillary Clinton came and offered a reward for the first rape conviction at the ICTR. Suddenly, all these women came forward to the ICTR to testify and then Akayesu was convicted for rape and many others followed! To know exactly what I am talking about, ask the defense attorneys in Arusha. They will tell you all about these women’s false allegations. For instance, they will say, “Oh, we were raped by this man for one, two weeks, etc.” After the cross-examination session, it’s obvious they are lying. Some of them will even admit it, but then they cannot to go back to Rwanda. This is a matter of fact. Do you realize that? Sometimes, when asked about conflicting facts in their testimony, these women reply, “I am sorry, I have forgotten,” or, “It wasn’t my idea.” If they testify otherwise though, there is a problem. This problem is real but it is minimized by ICTR prosecutors who maintain the genocide was planned and executed only by Hutu extremists. This is why the ICTR, through its prosecutors, is under RPF control. The ICTR has become the main source of money for the judges and attorneys who had a chance to get a job there. They are there to get rich. It is also about getting a reputation, about being known. The thing is, the prosecution must be done according to the will of Paul Kagame. There is one man who I owe much respect because said he couldn’t do his job under such conditions. That’s why he resigned on September 30th, 1996. A former ICTR judge named Richard Goldstone from South Africa said on the BBC (British Broadcasting Company) that what is happening at Arusha has nothing to do with the rule of law! “Nobody can talk about ICTR partiality. If we are going to reconcile Rwandans, we have to work under the rule of law. All crimes that have been committed between January 1st and December 31st, 1994, must be prosecuted, including RPF crimes committed against Hutus. We have to investigate and find out why so many people died and find out exactly what happened.” That’s what he said. From my side, when I came back to Rwanda for the second time in 1996, on the 17th of November, I personally saw people getting beaten, imprisoned, and killed by the RPF. My brothers and my sisters died in these conditions. I’d like to give you the names of some of my family members who were murdered by the RPF. Domitille Uwimana, who was working for the Red Cross, was raped for one week at the gendarmerie headquarters in Gisenyi before she was killed along with her one-year child named Nshuti. My brother, Charles Kizito Bwanakweli, disappeared on January 23rd, 1997. Diane and her sister Fifi, six and eight years old, and my other brothers Nshimiye and Ndagije, sixteen and seventeen years old, were also killed. At Mukamira Centrum in Nkuli Commune, the RPF massacred my cousin Josephine Mukagatare, her six children, and her husband Serushago. They killed my cousin Dativa, her mother, her three sisters, her brothers Emmanuel, Dusabe, Ntabugi, Kazehe, and her father Aloys Kanyabitaro. Rose was killed by the RPF on the morning of April 7th at Remera, in Kigali town. My uncle, Stanis Baganizi, was together with his wife Theresia, a tutsi woman (umugwabira) and their four children were burned alive in their house at Nyundo, in Gisenyi.
DB: Where were you in Rwanda?
DB: So, you came back through Goma?
JCN: Yeah. I was living near Goma in the camp at Mugunga on Lake Kivu. The camp was attacked by the RPF and we had to flee to Sake. Then we were forcibly sent back to Rwanda on November 14th, 1996.
DB: So you left Congo at the time Mugunga was destroyed.
JCN: Yes. I was living there at the time the massacres started. I fled to Sake where I stayed a couple of days before coming back to Rwanda.
DB: What happened in Mugunga? Can you describe what you saw?
JCN: Well, what I saw there…was just like, um…I have never been in the Sahara Desert before, but I think the day the RPF attacked must have been like that. It was very hot, a very hot afternoon. In the beginning, you know, there was intense artillery falling on the camp. I don’t know how to describe that, I’m not military. I am not a soldier. Before the attack, it was so hot in that camp we didn’t know how much worse the situation could possibly be. The roads were crowded with crying children and anxious women. First of all, before the attacks, I saw people in Mugunga who looked like journalists, white journalists, approaching us. They came to us and said that they wanted to know how we were doing and they asked if they could help somehow. They said they were working for an NGO but did not specify what organization they were working for.
DB: How many of them were there?
JCN: I saw three.
DB: Did they have any accents? Did they sound British, American, South African…
JCN: American accent, yes, there was one American there. British accent, yes, there was also one British guy. But South African I can’t say because I don’t know. I’m not sure where the third guy was from. I don’t believe they were journalists or NGO workers. They were wearing khaki shorts with small khaki shirts that had four pockets, two on top, two on bottom. At the same time, I couldn’t pay too much attention to them because I was in panic. We knew the RPF was approaching the camp and a bloodbath was about to happen. I had to decide very quickly if I wanted to go back to Rwanda or move ahead into the huge Congolese forests and mountains.
DB: What did they say that made you suspicious of them?
JCN: After they left, many people were shot and others were mutilated. When the RPF arrived at the camp, we didn’t know where exactly the rifles were shooting from and I don’t really know which side those ground troops attacked from. So many people got killed.11 I saw wounded people being helped into a Toyota vehicle. Many of them were mutilated and their arms and legs were blown off. There was so much blood on the road. The vehicle went towards Sake, where there were medical facilities. I am sure that those people who went there as NGO workers wanted to collect information so they could help the RPF attack the camp.
DB: Why did you go to Sake?
JCN: The first people who left Mugunga and went to the Rwandan border right away ran into the RPF and were killed. I couldn’t pass through. I just wanted to go with the crowd because I thought I would have a better chance to survive. I had to wait until later. If they found out I was somebody who knows something, I mean that I was educated, I would be killed. I couldn’t leave Congo that way. I even had to wear very dirty clothes so the RPF soldiers wouldn’t think I went to school.
DB: So most of the intellectuals decided to stay there in Congo?
JCN: Yes. Unfortunately, many of them got killed. I can’t say for sure who survived the RPF mass-slaughters. I know many of my friends got killed, including a classmate of mine, Banzi Wellars. He and his wife never returned to Rwanda. They were educated in mathematics. Those who survived the forest…there were many massacre sites in Congo were thousands of Hutu were killed. I know so many who died, but I won’t talk about them because there is not enough time for that. Many of the people who were butchered in Kibeho and in the Congo were teachers from Butare University.
DB: So they went into the forest and decided to take their chances and those who survived the forest ended up at the Tingi-Tingi? camp.
JCN: Not only at Tingi-Tingi?, but also later at Ubundu, Kisangani, Mbandaka, and many other sites where Hutus were slaughtered by RPF soldiers. There is one lady who lives in Switzerland who knows exactly how refugees were butchered by RPF soldiers. My people are ready to testify but most of them have not had an opportunity to do so like me. When I left Rwanda, I was with my wife and our daughter, Vanessa. She was the only child we had together. I told my wife I knew I would be killed by the RPF so I have to go to Congo without her. I was with a friend and my brother-in-law, Dr. Deo Twagirayezu. By the way, he’s also ready to testify publicly. He lives in exile in Europe. He’s suffered so much because he lost almost his entire family to RPF massacres. Ok. We had some money we were going to share and I said to my wife Catherine, “Go home ok, I’ll never see you again. I know I’m gonna die, but what I can do…maybe you will be safe, I don’t know, but please try to survive.” That’s what I told her. I was in tears of course. I kissed her for what I thought was the last time. After that, I left and when I arrived at the border between Rwanda and Congo at Gisenyi, an RPF soldier guarding the border there asked me, “Where are you going? Where are you staying?” I told him I was going to Butare.12 He looked at me with anger and said, “We will find you anytime.” There were thousands of people crossing while I was there. If you had any kind of document that showed you were educated, you could not survive. I saw many people who went to Congo before me that were killed. I also had some diplomas for my students. I hid them under a big stone before I left. Like so many of my fellow Rwandans, I had to destroy all my remaining documents, including my identity card. Our cloths were so worn…you could not imagine that we had not moved anywhere before this. There was one place at the border where the RPF separated some of the men from the women and they were led away. I don’t know where they were taken but I never saw any of them again. There was one lady from the Red Cross working there who called me over and said that I should not cross the border, it was too dangerous.13 She took me to her place where I stayed with my wife and child in Gisenyi for the night. Those who crossed over on that day, many of them got killed. We couldn’t find any of them on our way back to Nkuli Commune. That could have been me. As a matter of fact, in 1996 and 1997, RPF military officers serving in Ruhengeri Prefecture that killed people were promoted. As a reward for killing people in Ruhengeri, the RPF promoted soldiers to different positions in the ministries. People like (Deus) Kagiraneza were promoted to command the Ruhengeri Prefecture. (Gerald) Gahima, (Diogène) Bideli, (Charles) Zilimwabagabo, and many others killed thousands of Hutu in Ruhengeri. The RPF arbitrarily arrested people and put them in Ruhengeri Prison. Later, they were killed and their relatives were not even allowed to bury the body. You know Zac Nsenga? He represented Rwanda as the Ambassador to the United States. He was in Ruhengeri killing people also. As a promotion, he was given the post of Ambassador to Washington DC. It’s incredible! One time, Paul Kagame came personally to Ruhengeri and he called everybody to meeting. He blamed the local population for supporting the ex-FAR and Interahamwe. He even called on some of the attendees to stand up and explain why they were supporting the militias. He told them they would be held responsible for what would happen to them. He personally ordered the RPF soldiers there to kill everyone present at the meeting and he left after that. Hundreds of people were killed that evening. The killing occurred in Nkuli Commune, on the hills near the Gatovu secondary school. When I came back to Rwanda in November 1996, there were no military troops; no RPF soldiers were in the military camps. All of them were spread out across the country. You had twenty-five to twenty-six RPF soldiers in each commune. They had permission to kill any anyone they even suspected of disagreeing with the RPF. The other soldiers were known as the Local Defense Forces, or Abakada. They arrested, killed, looted, and terrorized Hutus throughout the country. They started training with the RPF in 1995 up to 1998. General Nyamwasa was the chief commander of military operations in Ruhengeri Prefecture. He organized all the massacres in that area. Throughout that prefecture, you had one hundred to four hundred soldiers total with twenty-five here, twenty-five there, twenty-five there, and they killed people every day after a few interrogations. They would shoot a friend of yours or maybe your brother and the way they killed him was so incredibly horrible that you couldn’t recognize him anymore. After that, they told us the people they killed were Interahamwe and they said the killings were proof for those who wouldn’t accept that we had Interahamwe living among us. They said, “This is the sentence for all those who committed genocide.” We didn’t even know who the Interahamwe really were. In reality, it was every single Hutu! We were all just told the Interahamwe were evil and were the enemy. We all knew that tomorrow any Hutu could be accused of being an Interahamwe, a common enemy that had to be destroyed, by anyone if they wanted us dead. We lived in constant fear. After that, we had to get food from the UNHCR (United Nations High Commission for Refugees) because when we returned to our houses after arriving back from Congo, we found they were occupied Tutsi returning from Uganda that supported the RPF. The UNHCR representatives told us they were going to give us papers that could be used to move from the countryside through the commune to go and get food. As I said, when we got back from Congo, all of our homes were forcibly occupied by Tutsis. You had no rights to reclaim the house that belonged to you. No. Anyone who said anything was accused of being an Interahamwe and was put in prison or executed. Those who asked RPF officials for their property back were also killed.
DB: Where were you at this time?
JCN: In Ruhengeri Prefecture. My family lived in a plastic sheet outside and we could say nothing about it. We had to worship those who had stolen our houses. It was slavery.
JCN: Because our homes were taken away by the RPF. We had to sleep outside and the UNHCR did nothing to help us. All they did was give us those papers. You had to use them during your travels inside the country. At the same time, that permit was proof you were a returnee from Congo, and that meant you were a refugee, an enemy who fled. It made it very easy for the RPF militias and the Local Defense Forces to identify you and kill you. Many of the returnees were reported missing. Others were imprisoned and still others were killed. That’s why I refused to travel anywhere and you know what, I still hate the UNHCR for that. I was forced to stay there in the countryside and couldn’t sell anything that belonged to us for food. Everything we had there was taken for the Tutsis’ enjoyment. We needed to buy documents such as an ID card, but this was not possible. We weren’t considered Rwandan citizens. We were treated like second-class citizens by everyone, even the U.N. So the only way to travel was to get an identity permit with your picture on it (Attestation d’Identité Complete) otherwise we were exposed to imprisonment, disappearances and killings. There was a soldier at every checkpoint for population control on the way to Kigali. Even in Kigali, we were checked every day, every morning, and every night.14 When we came back to Rwanda, people in Gisenyi who wanted to go to Cyangugu could not go through Goma as a shortcut and cross the border back into Rwanda at Bukavu. The RPF didn’t allow us to do this. Instead, we had to walk through Ruhengeri, then Kigali, Gitarama, then to Butare, Gikongoro and finally Cyangugu. We were forced to walk the entire way by the RPF. Do you understand? Many of the people who walked those hundreds of kilometers died on the way. There were UNHCR vehicles parked along the entire path, but they did not help anyone. It was so many kilometers to walk! Five hundred kilometers!? Six hundred kilometers!? Maybe even eight hundred kilometers?! I don’t know exactly but we did exactly the same thing as those people who fled into the Congo forests!
1 Note: Akandoya is a Ugandan word meaning to tightly bind both arms behind the victim’s back with such pressure that the ribs break.
2 Note: An agafuni is an old used hoe.
3 Note: Juvenal Uwilingiyimana, a Hutu, was the former Minister of Parks. His naked and maimed body was found in a canal in Brussels on 17 December 2005.
4 Note: The word Akazu means “little house.” In this context, it refers to a tight knit group of Hutu Bushiru, an area that included the Karango Commune President Habyarimana was born, and the Giciye Commune, where his wife Agathe Kanziga was from. She was reportedly well-connected and her “clan” wielded tremendous influence within the government. They were all Bakiga, which is a term generally referring to Hutu living in north-central and northwestern Rwanda (Byumba, Ruhengeri, Gisenyi). Bakiga resisted the Tutsi monarchy and were political opponents of the Hutu living in southern Rwanda, where Rwandan President Grégoire Kayibanda was from. Recent ICTR testimony by Jean-Marie? Vianney Nkezabera, a member of the Mouvement Démocratique Républicain (MDR), said the Akazu did not exist and were a creation of the political opposition parties to isolate President Habyarimana and discredit his leadership abilities. (“Akazu, Opponent’s Invention (Witness),” Hirondelle News Agency. 8 March 2007.)
5 Note: Chief of Investigations at the ICTR.
6 Note: Chief of Legal Proceeding at the ICTR.
7 Note: Mr. Delvaux was a police inspector at the time.
8 Note: Louise Arbour was the Chief Prosecutor of the ICTR at the time. During her tenure, ICTR judge Richard Goldstone (South Africa), Judge Honoré Rakotomana (an ICTR Prosecutor) and Mr. Alphonse Breau (then Director of Investigations) asked Australian lawyer Michael Hourigan to investigate the shoot-down of President Habyarimana’s plane. After completing his investigation, he concluded the RPA was responsible. When he presented his findings to Ms. Arbour, she abruptly shut down the investigation without warning. (Affidavit of Michael Andrew Hourigan. Filed at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. 27 November 2006.) After her tenure at the ICTR was completed, she was promoted to the Supreme Court of Canada and is currently the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. At the end of May 2007, she visited Rwanda and lauded their rebuilding efforts, but said the gacaca trials are progressing too slowly. (“UNCHR Chief Happy With Reforms, Advises on Gacaca,” The New Times. 27 May 2007.)
9 Note: According to a note left by Mr. Uwilingiyimana before he died, Mr. Delvaux, Mr. Renaud, Mr. Tremblay, Stephen Rapp (an American who was serving as Chief of Prosecutions at the time), and Chief Prosecutor Hassan Bubacar Jallow visited him on 5 October 2005. He says in the letter his life was threatened by Mr. Tremblay and Mr. Delavaux if he didn’t cooperate and incriminate Protais Zigiranyirazo, Mathieu Ngirumpatse, Edouard Karemara, and Michel Bagaragaza. (Letter to the Prosecutor of the ICTR. Juvénal Uwilingiyimana. 5 November 2005. http://www.internationalcrimesblog.com/Nov5_letter.pdf.) There have been other allegations of witness intimidation and tampering. One witness stated he was threatened to testify in support of Protais Zigiranyirazo and Tharcisse Renzaho accused Rwandan officials of intimidating defense witnesses. Several of the witnesses will no longer testify in the trial because of threats. (“The ICTR Orders an Inquest on an Eventual Pressure on a Witness,” Hirondelle News Agency. 4 April 2007; “Renzaho’s Defense Accuses Kigali of Witness Intimidation,” Hirondelle News Agency. 17 May 2007; “An ICTR Lawyer Denonces (sic!) the Threats Made to his Witnesses,” Hirondelle News Agency. 12 June 2007.)
10 Note: Jean-Paul? Akayesu was a teacher, school inspector, and MDR party member. He was also mayor of the Taba Commune. One woman who testified against him was killed with her family in mid-January 1997. Officially, the murders were committed by Hutu insurgents.
11 Note: The RPA attacked Mugunga from the northeast and the east in a strategic pincer attack. (Then) Colonel James Kabarebe led the RPA unit that approached Mugunga from the east and (then) Colonel Fred Ibingira led the RPA’s 7th Battalion approaching from the northeast. (Génocide de Mugunga. R94.org. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MW8j-o3JPrY.) RPA soldiers approaching from the east stole vehicles from the United Nations High Commissionner for Refugees (UNHCR) and forcibly loaded Rwandan medical patients at NGO clinics into the vehicles and moved them to Nkamira. The NGOs were also prohibited to distribute food to returning refugees. (“Rwanda: Human Rights Overlooked in Mass Repatriation.” Amnesty International. AFR 47/002/1997. 14 January 1997.)
DB: Now in 1996, in March, then again in October while you were in Congo, there were several Spanish priests and nuns killed in Rwanda. Do you know anything about these incidents?
JCN: What happened there, every outsider…priests, nuns, none of them could survive because they were accused of supporting the former regime. The RPF killed many of the priests all across the country and as you know many of Rwanda’s religious figures were assassinated in Gakurizo. They slaughtered bishops, nuns, and priests, especially Hutus. Another reason to kill the Spanish priests was because they helped resist the Tutsi monarchy in the past. They empowered Hutu with education through their missions. Also, the Spanish priests knew the RPF massacred Bagogwe,1 who the RPF said were killed by Interahamwe. The RPF believed the Spanish priests and nuns were reporting RPF massacres of Hutu to the international community and NGOs.
DB: Do you believe now, we saw that the RPF was particularly violent towards Hutu in the north, towards the so-called “Bakiga.”
DB: Do you believe that comes from their resistance to the monarchy? That Paul Kagame was carrying out an old feud so-to-speak?
JCN: Yes, I believe that is true. Even before when we had the monarchy in the country, it was rejected in the north and many of my fellow citizens, I mean those who were educated, were still threatened for not collaborating with the regime. I remember in 1996, Tito Rutaremara, the RPF’s main philosopher, his brother Jill Rutaremara,2 General Nyamwasa, and Antoine Mugesera, another RPF philosopher who actually is changing the history of Rwanda in Butare University, organized a meeting were they wanted to learn why the Bakiga did not accept a monarchy and minority rule. It was held in Ruhengeri town. Dr. Twagirayezy was there as an attendee and he actually wants to testify about this event as I told you before. They brought a document for everyone to sign as a contract agreeing to RPF rule in order to bring security back to the region and the person who signed it took an oath not to undermine the RPF’s efforts. Many of the people that gathered there were killed; especially those who refused to sign the document.
DB: Some individuals have brought up Paul Kagame’s own unique bloodlines that extend back to the monarchy. Does this influence his domestic policies?
JCN: In my country, we have a president, but we really have an unofficial monarchy. You know, in that country we have two competitive clans: Abanyiginya and Abega. They have been killing each other for power, you know, and whatever clan was in charge of the monarchy always killed local Hutu chiefs to expand their influence. Have you ever heard about the Kalinga?
DB: Yes, I have heard about that. It was a symbolic royal war drum.
JCN: Yea, they hung the testicles of Hutu from it for about four centuries.
DB: I have heard of it before, but I always wondered if it was real or just propaganda to demonize the monarchy.
JCN: It’s true. It’s true.
DB: Do you think his ties to the royal family help him keep the loyalty of some RPF members? 3
JCN: I know that he is related to one of the royal family, I don’t know, one of them was killed in the genocide.
DB: Oh, yes. That was his aunt. It’s his aunt Rosalie Gicanda. She was the Queen Mother.
JCN: Yes, I heard about that, but I already know, Kagame does not want the rule of a monarchy to become official because the king has to answer before the Tutsi council, “Abiru”, a council that holds the real power over the country. That is exactly the same council used in gacaca courts today to decide every Hutu’s fate.
DB: Are you saying that if he formally becomes king, he would have to answer to somebody?
JCN: Yes, and this is the big issue. Kagame is from the Abega tribe, so he hates the Abanyiginya who for four centuries were ruling the country before a revolution took place in 1959 to overthrow the monarchy and install a Republican regime. He is the king of Rwanda under the president’s label. He decides everyone’s destiny, takes or gives to anybody he likes or dislikes. The entire power is in his hands. Whoever says anything contrary to his will gets arrested or killed by his death squads. He says how everything must be done. I think you understand this.
DB: I saw President Kagame speak at Amahoro Stadium on Liberation Day last year and it was particularly remarkable how different his attitude was during his speech from his trips abroad. His delivery and word choice had so much more conviction and was so stern compared to when he is speaking abroad.
JCN: Also, in 1996, Kagame said that he would destroy the refugee camps in Congo anytime he wanted due to the fact they did not listen to him when he asked them to return to Rwanda. Then, after they forcibly returned, he invited the public to Amahoro Stadium and he had a group of Hutu refugees march before everyone in the stadium. He said, “You see these Interahamwe marching in front of you. They aren’t human anymore. Look at them! And they tell people they can attack Rwanda! They are nothing! Nothing!”
DB: Now in 1997, there were a number of assassinations in your country. In January and February, you had several U.N. observers killed.
JCN: If it was January or February, I don’t remember, but the killings were blamed on ex-FAR while it was really more RPF crimes. All of those ex-FAR who were sent back to Rwanda were told they would be integrated into the new RPF army. Many of them believed that and later in January they were killed together with their families and neighbors. This carnage took place in Rwanda during thirty straight days of killings. RPF soldiers and Local Defense Forces started by killing the high ranking ex-FAR officers together with their wives, children and all their neighbors so that nobody could testify. They killed everybody within one kilometer of the targeted neighborhood.
DB: Do you know Kiswahili by chance?
JCN: Yes, I do.
DB: You know the word, “Fagia?”
JCN: Yeah, fagia means “finish the job.”
DB: Ok. I am aware that Kagame….
JCN: Yes, that’s…
DB: …used that word to speak of such operations.
JCN: …to finish the job.
DB: So essentially, it’s….it’s a complete extermination of one’s bloodline in a sense, if it’s a targeted individual.
JCN: Yes. “Fagia” meaning to kill him or them, those who were targeted….nobody could survive.
JCN: We know that many people here, there, everywhere were killed in a different manner. The RPF used akandoya and other times, they forced someone to kill their own friend, bury them, and then the RPF killed them also. They used such cruel methods, not just killing someone but humiliating them first.
DB: What you just described, this was all around Ruhengeri?
JCN: Yes, Ruhengeri Prefecture was like….it was horrible.
DB: Now, when the U.N. observers were murdered on the 4th of February, I have it at the Karengera Commune near Cyangugu and that a Briton was among those killed. Only about a week earlier, several Spanish medical workers for Medicos del Mundo were killed and an American worker was among those wounded.4 There’s currently a pending lawsuit against several Rwandan military officials for this incident.5 What were these events about?
JCN: The RPF was always up there in 1997. They were always by the border area. We were told Interahamwe were crossing the border and killing people, but for us in the north, we never saw any Interahamwe as far as I can remember, but we saw many people getting killed. There were times around one hundred people were killed in Cyamabuye Pentecostal Church and in several schools, but they officially reported these killings were criminal acts by the Interahamwe, but this was not true. The RPF and Local Defense Forces killed everybody in the area and at the end of the day, RPF local authorities reported that all of them were killed by Interahamwe or by ex-FAR insurgents crossing over from Congo. The soldiers would even take weapons with them and leave them with the bodies and say they were Hutu infiltrators. Nobody could take a risk and say that RPF was involved in those massacres. Another trick that the RPF used is they went to your home at night and brought a pair of boots and left them there. In the morning, they came back and said that you were using the boots to help Interahamwe cross Lake Kivu into Rwanda. As a result, they killed those people and told everyone they were helping the insurgents.Those Spanish citizens, they died like so many Rwandans did. They were not killed by insurgents; they were killed by RPF soldiers and LDF (Local Defense Forces). As I said earlier, the RPF killed Bagogwe in that area and said the Interahamwe killed them. They added that the genocide is underway again. Those aid workers knew about this and were going to report it.6
DB: Then in February, as I mentioned, another priest was killed and then several U.N. were killed in Karengera.
DB: Yea. Was this a similar situation?
JCN: Yes. The RPF believed those guys were giving information to the international community and the RPF had a policy to kill without being seen or finish the job without any eyewitness to their crimes. That’s also what happened to the Canadian priest in Ruhengeri and to the Croatian priests and so on…
DB: I want to ask a question specifically about the Local Defense Forces. When I was in Rwanda, as I was coming in from the countryside, I saw soldiers in camouflage uniforms patrolling along the road to Kigali, particularly around the forests. In the forests, there were also soldiers blending in amongst the forest, presumably for border security. In Kigali, there were armed men, typically young, who wore pink uniforms, but not the prison uniforms. I was told by Rwandans they were called the “Local Defense Force.” Who were these different groups of soldiers?
JCN: You have guys who, most of those guys in the countryside roads are RPF. The Local Defense Force does not wear a uniform out there. They look like ordinary Rwandans. But all in all, they were Abakada as we Rwandans call them. Those guys travel in groups of five, all men, and they patrol the area they are in charge of. They are not paid and they do whatever they want in the area they control. Their main training camps are in Mutobo, Gabiro, and Gishari. But also, there are these so-called “Rasta,” who are Hutu soldiers, sometimes even ex-FAR, that work for and are under RPF supervision.7
DB: So it is a paramilitary unit.
JCN: A paramilitary unit as you said, yes, but they received training from RPF officers. They even make maps and generate plans together with RPF soldiers for their military operations.
DB: That helps clarify things for me a bit. Now just one more question with regards to specific military units. One well-known military unit in Rwanda is the Presidential Guard. In Rwanda today, in current times, what role does this unit play? What is their mission? Is it only to provide physical protection for President Kagame?
JCN: The Presidential Guard, what it is…ok. Everywhere President Kagame goes in the country; they are part of his escort and must be there with him. They are all chosen to do the job, you cannot volunteer. It is run by Frank Nziza. They are mostly used in special death squad missions inside and outside the country. There is no denying also they have received training by U.S. Special Forces and some of them, including U.S. intelligence-gathering units, are based in Kigali-Kacyiru?.
DB: When I was in Kigali, I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to tour the KIST (Kigali Institute of Science and Technology) school grounds. I asked some of the students there what they were going to do once they graduated. All of them told me they were going to work for their country. Since it is a technology-education school, they said they were going to work for firms like Terracom and other state-owned telecommunications firms. What is the relationship between schools, jobs, and political ideology in Rwanda?
JCN: Let me explain to you the job situation as I understand it. In the countryside, we were told by Rwandans coming from Kigali there was nowhere to go. I went to Kigali by taxi and got a job at Sulfo-Rwanda? Industries, an Indian-owned mining company. When I worked there, every intellectual Hutu had to pay 5,000 Rwandan Francs8 every week to their supervisor. This guy who worked there, he was a friend of Rose Kabuye’s9 husband. He told me if I didn’t pay him every week, he will come back to find me and my new home would be 1930, meaning the central prison in Kigali. I was afraid so I paid every week on Friday. They told me, “You have to know what happened to other Hutus.” He also told me he’s saving my life and I actually do agree with that. After that, I decided to try and find another job. I went for an interview with the UNDP (United Nations Development Project) and a Tutsi woman refused to give me access to the person in charge of interviews. She said I had to bring proof that I have a job from the Ministry of Industry. I told her, “No, I got a job at Sulfo-Rwanda? you cannot ask me to bring such proof. Everyone there knows me.” She responded, “That’s your business.” Then I left and understood I would never get that job.Also, there was a guy connected to Sulfo-Rwanda?, Froduald Karamira, who was killed on February 14th, 1997. I was in Nkuli Commune on that day, which is now known as Buhoma District. He was accused of being a Hutu extremist so he fled to India through his contacts at Sulfo-Rwanda?. He was arrested in Bombay and instead of being sent to the ICTR, he was deported back to Rwanda. In return, India was given a contract to supply the RPF military with TATA vehicles. Karamira admitted he was guilty and the RPF took him and a woman lawyer to Nyabugogo and shot them in public. However, the real reason he was shot was so the RPF could confiscate his property, just like they did with Kabuga’s properties. Clever, huh?Every Hutu lived like this. You had to work for the government, for the RPF. They used other workers to keep informed about every newcomer, everyone who’s starting work. To understand this, let me give you an example. Today, when you graduate, you must go to a training center at Gikondo for brainwashing to get a job. Every semester, some graduates are chosen to be sent there from among all the universities in Rwanda. Nobody knows where that person is going and then they return later, both Hutu and Tutsi, determined to kill anyone who opposes the RPF. You spend six months at the center. They give you a list of people to hate, people who are supposed to be opponents of the RPF. People are taught to hate their own parents and friends if they oppose the RPF. These people spy on everyone else at work and report suspicious people to the Department of Military Intelligence. After one and a half years of living in this hell, I fled to Nairobi.
DB: That was when you eventually moved out of Africa?
JCN: At that time, my wife was regularly travelling to Kigali. Many people thought she looked like a Tutsi so she didn’t have as much trouble. The third time she went there, her friends were killed. She came back and told me to leave. We got a traveling permit and I traveled to Kigali. The last day I fled to Kampala and from there I went to Nairobi. After Seth died, I left Africa. I am not afraid to say that. I have nothing to hide.DB: What happened in Bwindi Forest in 1999?JCN: You know Americans were killed there right?
DB: Well, there were reports that an armed group came and killed some western tourists. Some said it was Interahamwe, others said it was a Ugandan rebel group like the ADF (Allied Democratic Forces) or NALU (National Army for the Liberation of Uganda). There were different….
JCN: If you ask me that question, I will ask you why you the Bagogwe tribe got killed in Gisenyi. Who is the perpetrator? The same one who killed the American tourists: the RPF soldiers and Paul Kagame. After Madeline Albright arrived in Rwanda….
DB: This was where?
JCN: I was in Rwanda, in the countryside, in my commune of origin. Albright left to go to Congo or something like that. After they left Rwanda, Bagogwe were killed by the RPF and they reported the Interahamwe did it. Albright and…I don’t remember the other one; she was in African Affairs Department.
DB: That would be Susan Rice.
JCN: Yes, Miss Susan Rice. She also came back to Rwanda with Albright and met with Paul Kagame. After the meeting she approved his allegations that the Interahamwe killed the Bagogwe. Everybody knows that version of facts is incorrect. The Prefect of Gisenyi, Epimaque, said on Radio Rwanda the Bagogwe were killed because they were stealing potatoes. Kagame got mad about that and removed him. Exactly the same thing happened to the tourists, the American tourists. This was an act of terrorism.10 On that same day, in Jenda District, where I was born, and also in Nkuli, RPA soldiers killed at least 500 civilians on November 21st. Susan Rice did not say anything about this. Why did she condemn this crime and accuse Hutus before an independent inquiry team went there to investigate?
DB: Are you saying the RPF committed all those crimes?
JCN: Of course, I know this for sure. I also know that they even killed Tutsis in different areas, including a Tutsi agriculturist in Ruhengeri. I don’t know his name unfortunately, but he was an agriculturalist who worked at the plantations in the countryside of Nkuli and Karago communes. He was killed at the Adventist Church in Rwankeli, Nkuli Commune with his wife, children, and fifteen neighbors. The RPF blamed the Abacengezi.11 In total, seventeen people were killed that day in the same area.
Also that year, in January 1997, one RPF soldier was killed in public because he was supposed to kill some people, but did not. There was a Hutu woman who came to ask for her husband’s house back because it had been taken over by Tutsis. For this courageous act, the woman had to die. The soldier who was ordered to shoot her did not do so and that RPF soldier was killed for not following instructions. He was shot in public. So when Paul Kagame says he punished those who were involved in killings, it’s not really true. The RPF soldiers who did follow such orders, they were glorified and promoted to the highest military rankings. For example, Colonel Ibingira after he massacred displaced people in Kibeho. There was also (Faustin-Kayumba) Nyamwasa, (Jackson) Nziza, (Gerald) Gahima, (Charles) Zilimwabagabo…as a matter of fact; the RPF punishes those who don’t kill Hutus. Can you believe that? You can’t believe this. But it’s true.
DB: Let’s talk about another one of those cases you just mentioned. Can you tell me about Kibeho?
JCN: Yes, Kibeho, I cannot forget that because I had a good friend who was killed there. Remember, you asked me in the beginning about how people in Butare were killed by the RPF soldiers while U.N. forces were there? University workers, students, and teachers were massacred in front of the U.N. peacekeeping forces. At first, the Rwandans who ended up in that camp were going to flee to the southern region of Congo, but this did not happen because they were told they would be protected by the U.N. peacekeeping forces. At that time, Octave Iligukunze, a classmate and a friend of mine at Moscow University was there. He was there with other Hutu intellectuals at the camp and… you know what, I’ll never, ever see him again because the RPF killed all of them. They were told to go to Kibeho and after that, Paul Kagame gave an ultimatum and told them leave the camps. He said the RPF is going to close the camps in Rwanda starting with Kibeho because it was not necessary for them to stay open because the country is now safer than it was before. The result was catastrophic, unspeakable killings done with U.N. and UNHCR complicity. The RPF started by using machine guns and mortars to destroy the camp; destroy the houses, to destroy all the people. They killed women, children, and young guys from the university that were there. This was a bloody planned genocide as I told you before; genocide planned very well by the RPF leadership. No Hutu intellectual could be allowed survive. If you survived Kibeho, you had to go to the countryside and stay there until you disappeared or were killed very far from the U.N. observers in Kigali. We had no rights. We were treated animals that had to be butchered. No more, no less. Luckily, I had a chance to escape and go to Kigali. How did I get there? Through bribery and corruption…using whatever I could so that I could go there.
DB: To Kigali?
JCN: Yes. I know how my friends got killed at the same time as I left my area for Kigali, but you have asked me about Kibeho so…Kibeho was really our tragic history to live with. I don’t…I compare it to the Jewish Auschwitz. During the morning, starting at about 04:00, they started shooting and using all kinds of weapons, including heavy artillery to kill them. They killed a lot of innocent people. They did not care. U.N. soldiers from Australia that were there have said they are ready to testify anywhere if they are asked. They saw everything.12 There was also an organization that included this lady named Kleine who has a website where you can find pictures of the mass graves.13 You have seen those?
DB: Yea, I’ve seen those.
JCN: So the guy, Paul Kagame, decided to close the camps using this guy named Fred Ibingira, who was promoted to the rank of General a few months later. He worked with Jacques Bihozagara, who was first promoted to be the Rwandan Ambassador to Belgium then later as the Ambassador to France for having killed so many people. You know that I talked about him already. He was killing people in Ruhengeri before getting appointed to a higher position. Also, there was Major Rubagumya Gacinya, who headed the CID (Criminal Investigation Division) and was recently named the military attaché at the Rwandan Embassy in Washington D.C.
Now, let’s talk about happened to my people, my fellow citizens. President Bizimungu went to Kibeho because he was afraid of Kagame and he told everybody only a few hundred were killed there. At the same time, how many really died? Most people say eight thousand people but I met a guy from the UNHCR who told me twenty-one thousand died, including Kibeho and the surrounding area.
DB: I found some similar information that I would like to share with you and get your reaction. It started on the 22nd or 23rd, but the day after the killings, the United States Embassy sent its Defense Attaché Officer (DAO), whose name is Lieutenant Colonel Thomas Odom, along with Mr. Mickey Dunham, the Operations Officer in the Defense Attaché Office at the U.S. Embassy to Kibeho to find out exactly what happened.14
DB: They spoke with Sam Kaka, Colonel Nyamwasa, Charles Muhire, and Lieutenant Colonel Karenzi. When they left, they told U.S. Ambassador David Rawson that 2,000 were killed in Kibeho. Now this is what Lieutenant Colonel Odom, a well-trained and veteran military officer said was his reasoning for his estimate. He determined eight thousand or more bodies could not possibly have been moved overnight because there were only five thousand RPF soldiers in the area, which wasn’t enough manpower to move that many bodies and also remove all the shell casings it would have taken to shoot that many people.15After that, Ambassador Rawson called in a lawyer named Maurice Nyberg, an American who was part of the U.N. Special Investigations Unit that eventually became the ICTR. Anyway, he investigated Kibeho for a month and stayed with Lieutenant Colonel Odom at the house of the U.S. Embassy’s Political Officer at the time, (then) Ms. Laura Lane. Whatever Mr. Nyberg discovered was never made public.16 The reason I bring this up, first it is clear the U.S. was on the ground in Kibeho very quickly after the event. Second, there are no indications they ever interrogated any surviving refugees in the camp. What are your thoughts on this?
JCN: Of course, this is ridiculous and shameful. I don’t understand how the U.S. could support such criminals.
DB: To move on from that subject, you, now in 1993, you were in Moscow for graduate school?
JCN: Yes, up to February 28th, 1993.
DB: Can you tell me what happened when you got back to Rwanda?
JCN: Well, I told you about the February attack in 1993. I thought there would be peace in Rwanda; otherwise I wouldn’t have gone back. What I remember is that the RPF signed the Arusha Accords. Rwandans thought those accords would be implemented, but the RPF had another agenda. Many people in Rwanda were hopeful the fighting would end, but, for the U.S. and the U.K., as RPF backers, this would be a tragedy because the RPF would lose the elections because they killed so many people and nobody wanted them in power after what they experienced. That is why RPF had to step up to the second level; to step up to the killing of Hutu political leaders like Gatabazi, Bucyana, Rwambuka and Gapyisi. The RPF expected the Hutu to react by killing Tutsis so the RPF could resume hostilities and say they were defending Tutsi, but this did not happen. Eventually, they stepped to the 3rd level and eliminated President Juvenal Habyarimana and hoped Hutus would be too angry to stay calm. Without that, the RPF could not seize power and accomplish the final agenda of going to the Congo to payback their debts to their backers.
DB: You believed the Arusha Accords would hold?
JCN: Myself, yes. I believed Hutu and Tutsi finally had a chance to live together without too many problems.
DB: Where did you go when you first arrived back in Rwanda?
JCN: I stayed in Kigali because I came back with Jews, Russian Jews who wanted to establish a company in Kigali for mineral resources.
DB: Do you know the name of the company?
JCN: Excuse me?
DB: Do you know the name of the company?
JCN: (Long pause)
DB: That’s ok if you don’t remember.
JCN: (Laughs) I will be telling you sometime maybe. I had a problem with the Rwandan Government because they said we cannot accept their offer because there was already another company mining the mineral resources. They did not want the Russians to go in there. They asked me to pay six thous-…er, six million Rwandan Francs unfortunately. I refused. I was so angry. In the end, we had to negotiate and we paid four to five million for the startup costs.
DB: So at some point, you said you went home to…er, you said you accepted a job at the university in Gisenyi.
JCN: What happened to me was, after that, people from the MRND said, “This guy, Jean-Christophe? is not helping so we have to work with someone else, we have to discuss directly with the Russians.” They decided to remove me and send me to Gisenyi. Before I came back to Rwanda, I had not even heard of this university, but I went because they asked me to and I had no choice.
DB: Who asked you to go?
JCN: They were people from the MRND. One of them belonged to Habyarimana’s family. They were angry with me, but I really don’t want to talk about this. Actually, in 1993, this is why I decided to pursue my PhD studies in Canada. First, I had a proposal from the U.S. Embassy, but later I decided to go to Canada after winning a French speaking scholarship that gave me the possibility to pursue PhD studies. I told the Canadian Embassy not to tell anyone because I was afraid they would find out and put an end to my dreams. I later resigned from the institute after March 5th and I got a letter from the Rwandan Embassy in Canada that I was chosen to fly to Canada. I didn’t tell anyone at the university where I was going for security reasons. Fortunately, at that time, everything went smoothly. What happened later in the beginning of April, it was unthinkable for me because the Canadian Embassy told me I had to prepare to leave for Canada in April 1994. Then, you know what happened next.
JCN: The death of Habyarimana.
DB: You mentioned that you first had an offer to go abroad through the U.S. Embassy. How did you forge ties with the United States Embassy?
JCN: Ok, first of all, I needed books for my studies at the Institute so I got some contacts the embassy and they put me in touch with their Political Affairs officer named Linda. She told me there was no problem and she was going to help me. She said she could also get books from the U.S. and she did. I got many books from her. She also gave me a pass to attend a July 4th celebration held at the U.S. Embassy in 1993. After that, she told me that I could maybe get a Fulbright Scholarship to go to the U.S. and get my PhD. I said, “Ok. I have to tell those MRND guys who sent me to the university.” They told me that there was no problem to go to the U.S. I just had to wait and decide with Linda. In January 1994, she told me I really should go, but I thought the Arusha Accords would hold so I did not go. I have no idea if she knew that something was going to happen and was trying to warn me. I regret that I did not go because of what happened to me after that was not really….it was my fault. I made a mistake.
DB: But you honestly believed the Arusha Accords would work?
DB: Ok. So you told Linda Buggeln at the U.S. Embassy you were not going to go and the Arusha Accords were already signed but not implemented. Then there were a series of political assassinations in Rwanda. You mentioned these names earlier. Gapyisi, Rwambuka, Gatabazi, Bucyana…what can you tell me about what it was like in Rwanda at that time? Who was responsible for these killings and did they influence the intensity of the genocide?
JCN: As I told you before, the killings were part of the strategy of genocide, so that mass killings of Tutsi would occur in Rwanda. It was a plan that was initiated by the RPF leadership because the RPF knew they could not seize power under the Arusha Accords. They had to have mass killings of Tutsi so they could start the final aggression and say that they were fighting to stop the killings when all they really wanted was to seize power. They had to get people to kill Tutsis and the killing of Hutu in the northwest of my country was obviously not enough to generate that kind of hate. People got angry and their anger was rising day after day towards the RPF, but they were not attacking Tutsi civilians. The second step was to create strong tension between the people to prepare them for killing. You are going to ask me how. In the beginning, they started by killing the heads of prefectures. They watched the reaction from the government, from others, you know, the chairmen of political parties, and they saw Rwandans acting disciplined. Rwandans were not reacting to every single RPF attack, every assassination. So they said, “Ok, we have people in power that really have influence in this country. Let’s start with them.”They started by killing Emmanuel Gapyisi of the MDR (Democratic Republican Movement) in May 1993.17 Gapysi was very intellectual and he was supposed to replace Habyarimana, as I understood it at the time. He was from the south, but was supported by Hutu in both the north and the south. He created a kind of a…he was in the right place at the right moment. The RPF saw that he was going to replace Habyarimana and possibly help unite Hutu in the north and the south, which was not in their interests.Then in August 1993, the RPF decided to really raise tensions by killing Fidele Rwambuka, the Mayor of Kanzenze Commune from the MRND party. These assassinations were trigger points and each time the RPF killed one of them, they thought the militias of their political parties would react by killing Tutsi, which would allow the RPF to resume aggressions. When they killed Fidel Rwambuka, there were riots but no lynching, so nothing happened.In February 1994, they killed Felicien Gatabazi of the PSD (Social Democratic Party). He was going home and the RPF killed him at the gate to his house. People say that Eric Hakizimana led the death squad that killed him. In 1993, when the RPF was killing people in the north and they attacked Ruhengeri, they destroyed the electricity source, water supply…they destroyed everything. Gatabazi, who was the Minister of Public Works, said, “We can’t trust the RPF anymore. What they did is a crime against humanity. How could they do this knowing that ninety percent of the population used that water? Why did they destroy it?”18 After he said that, he was killed because the RPF knew they would no longer have his support. You see, he went too far because he sent the Abakombozi19 to train with RPF soldiers in Mulindi. They thought he had no right to criticize them. That’s why they killed him. After he was killed, Abakombozi militias of the PSD got angry and started riots with the CDR (Coalition for the Defense of the Republic)20 militia, the Impuzamugambi21, who they thought had killed Gatabazi. This was just what the RPF wanted. See, after Gatabazi was killed, the RPF began using Radio Muhabura to spread lots of rumors about who had done it. Infiltrators in Kigali helped out by telling people in town. You know the big difference rumors can make during wartime. Still, Habyarimana did not believe it. He told everybody to stop the riots because this is exactly what somebody wants us to do. We must stop. Everybody did stop, but divisions were created between the parties. It also made the Rwandan conflict look like a civil war to the outside world and that is what the RPF wanted. Unfortunately for them, the Hutu stopped rioting and they still did not kill Tutsi. The next day, the RPF did a very smart move from their viewpoint. They killed Martin Bucyana, the CDR’s president. By killing the head of the “extremist” party, they thought for sure Tutsi were going to be killed because they knew the CDR would blame the RPF and kill Tutsi civilians who they thought were RPF infiltrators in revenge. Also, Bucyana was killed when he was travelling from Cyangugu to Butare in his own car. The RPF killed him knowing that, if he was killed in the area where Gatabazi was born, the CDR might also blame the Abakombozi for the killing and the Abakombozi would start riots with the CDR militias again. At the same time, Radio Muhabura said the Hutu militias were responsible to make sure there was mass confusion. The RPF also got help from the international community, who were only saying in the press that Bucyana was an extremist, like he deserved to be killed. That way, nobody cared that he was killed and nobody would ask questions about who really killed him.The RPF was increasing tensions to get an explosion of violence. I myself can say that tensions were much worse after each political killing. Sometimes during the latest riots after Bucyana’s death, there was lynching. After that, people did not want to be around anyone they didn’t know. You would go to a new place, for example a bar, and the people there would say to you, “Who are you? Don’t you know the RPF is going to be here in two weeks? Get out of the bar!” Then people, including infiltrators, were going around telling Hutu, “You have to get armed, the enemy is increasing every day.” Infiltrators were also committing random killings in the city. They would drive by somewhere on a motorcycle and use a grenade somewhere that people had gathered. Myself, I had Tutsi family friends, but we became divided by stereotypes. While all of this is going on, one of these politicians were killed, somebody’s friend and a member of a powerful political party. The RPF expected people to react! Still, it did not happen! The RPF and its allies were very angry with that. They did not understand what kind of people they were dealing with.
DB: Where the FAR and Presidential Guard compromised by RPF infiltrators by the time President Habyarimana was killed?
JCN: I really don’t know for sure but I do not think so. Other units were infiltrated but not the Presidential Guard. The RPF did offer Major Ntabakuze millions of dollars to work for the RPF, but I was told he refused.So the final step, the final job, was to kill President Habyarimana, the president’s staff, and Déogratias Nsabimana, the FAR Chief of Staff who went with him to Tanzania. They were killed coming back from a meeting about implementing the Arusha Accords. What the RPF did is obvious. That series of assassinations, the killers showed deep knowledge of Rwandans’ limits of tolerance. It was the last possible step in something they had planned for a long time. I believe they chose April 6th because Paul Kagame thought the militias were at their breaking point and they would kill with the most anger because of the tensions.22 They knew that people were already very angry and prepared to kill because they were paranoid and thought so many Tutsi were RPF sympathizers. The RPF knew people would get revenge this time. That’s why you saw those people killing everybody after President Habyarimana. The country had not only Tutsi, who were financing the RPF, but you had infiltrators, RPF infiltrators in so many places. You must know Valens Kajeguhakwa, who was with the RPF, said they even used priests to hide RPF weapons in churches. Everyone knew this and unfortunately, the Hutu militias found documents and RPA identity cards on many people in the churches and that is why so many people believed this and killed so many people in the churches. They realized they had been betrayed and because of the tension, because of the situation after the killing of President Habyarimana, the FAR and gendarmes were unable to control the militias. The country was beheaded and the genocide could only be planned by someone who knew the consequences of the 6th of April and it was not a surprise to anyone to see the RPF attack in Kigali and Kanombe on the same night Habyarimana died.
DB: President Habyarimana had a famous nickname did he not?
DB: He was called, “Ikinani.”
DB: The Invincible.
JCN: The Invincible. What that means, he said so because when he went to Ruhengeri, he said that at the time we had many political parties in the country. So they had to go and vote. He had been in power for many years and he said he was going to stay there. He also said to everyone, “My Interahamwe are going to win.” Radio Muhabura told everyone Habyarimana was not invincible to the RPF. The truth is, people who wanted democracy would never have voted for the RPF over Habyarimana, and he knew that. So the RPF knew they had to somehow mobilize opinion against the MRND.
1 Note: The Bagogwe are a sub-group of Tutsi pastoralists who live in northwestern Rwanda around Gisenyi and Ruhengeri.
2 Note: Jill Rutaremara is currently the Military Spokesman for the RPA.
3 Note: In pre-colonial times, before the ethnic (or racial within Rwanda) identity of Hutu and Tutsi deeply divided the country; clans (ubwoko singular) formed the foundation of Rwandan society and identity. The clan is the most abstract form of patrilineal kinship in Rwanda but its members do not trace back to a common ancestor. Clans do not regard ethnic identity and all clans have both Hutu and Tutsi members. Clan membership does not bestow a social status or privilege to its members and clans do not have a “leader” or person in charge. (Government of the Republic of Rwanda. “The Counting of the Genocide Victims: Final Report.” Ministry for Local Government: Department of Information and Social Affairs. November 2002. pg. 7.) The only possible exceptions were the Abanyiginya and Abega clans. However, originating from one of these clans does not afford an elevated social status to its members because other sub-divisions within the clan, such as lineage, are more indicative of social status. Rwandan mythology says these two clans hold a sacred origin because the Rwandan Kings were chosen from these clans. In pre-colonial times, the King was believed to be a divine being sent by God and was considered to be the physical embodiment of Rwanda itself. (Mamdani, Mahmood. “When Victims Become Killers.” Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press. 2002. 3rd Edition. pg. 54-55, 79.) The Queen Mother came from the Abega clan. (Martins, Ludo. “Rwanda: The Responsibility of Belgium in the Creation of a Racist Ideology.” Report Presented at the Conference on Rwanda. English Translation. Brussels, Belgium. 5 April 1997; Prunier, Gérard. “The Rwanda Crisis: History of a Genocide.” New York, New York: Columbia University Press. 1995. pg. 9.) As the Rwandan refugees from the late 1950s-very early 1960s grew up in Uganda.
DB: Can you comment of the recent release of former president Pasteur Bizimungu?
JCN: Bizimungu is just like the situation with releasing those kids from prison. Kagame said publicly it was for national reconciliation. He made Bizimungu write a letter to apologize and ask for forgiveness. Bizimungu had, in fact, already written a letter to Kagame earlier asking for clemency, but Kagame lied and said he never wrote such a letter. It was not Kagame’s good will that released him. Bizimungu is a finished man. He is very sick and cannot do anything. The way he was treated in prison…they will never let him leave Rwanda. He knows too much. They are afraid of what he will say. He can’t apply for exile. It’s incredible. What I see is Paul Kagame becoming god, in my own country. Anything that happens must be ordered by him. Only he has the power to let you survive. This is why many prisoners are freed all at once, usually along with RPF infiltrators mixed in with them. The infiltrators ask the prisoners about their crimes to find out who really killed who and report to military intelligence.
DB: What was the reason he was released?
JCN: He went to prison on multiple charges. After Bizimungu found out the real agenda of the RPF after Kibeho, he said, “I’m gone. I’m going to found my own political party PDR-Ubuyanja (Party for Democratic Renewal).” His party brought in many followers like Ntakirutinka. Some of the party members were killed by the RPF and then Bizimungu was sent to prison to stop any attempt to create a serious opposition party to the RPF. The RPF wanted to control the forum. They had no use for all those political parties and Bizimungu’s party could have competed for the presidency.
DB: Is this also why former Speaker Sebarenzi was considered a threat?
JCN: Yes. It was the same arrangement. I think he left the country because he was considering joining that party, then he later founded a political party after he was in exile.Back to the prison system…it’s unbelievable. Every commune has two hundred RPF and Local Defense Forces. They arrest any Hutu in the north they want. After holding them for several days, they tell him he can go free, but first he must sign a document stating he killed Tutsi during the genocide. He also must also name four Hutu and say they killed with him. It can be any four Hutu; they don’t really care if they actually committed any crimes. If you refuse, you stay in jail. So for every one that is released, four go in jail. When something happens to make the RPF look bad to the international community, they release most of these prisoners and say it is for national reconciliation to look good.1 Others are tried in gacaca. All those prisoners have to say, “Oh yes, we killed Tutsis.” Nobody wants to stay in those prisons.2 For five thousand Rwandan Francs, you can have somebody sign a paper accusing anybody you want of genocide. Then that person is thrown in jail. The Red Cross even knows about this system. They kept lists of the prisoners they met with. Every time they went back to those prisons, people on their list had disappeared.
DB : You know Paul Wolfowitz, the World Bank’s President?
JCN : He fooled everybody when he went to Rwanda. People think the World Bank is going to help them, but Wolfowitz said he was proud of Rwanda and that the country was going well. He was saying how prisoners working on the plantations are a good thing. You can go to Butare, Kigali, more so in the north, you will see what those prisoners are doing. As I said, they are forced to work on plantations owned by RPF leaders. I found out also that foreign NGOs are using this labor force! I know of some Belgian NGOs for sure. There needs to be an investigation into this. They use the cheapest kind of labor where you pay nothing and then the same NGOs ask for donations from their own countries to give to Rwandans! They keep the money and they don’t need to pay their workers. They even use these kids as labor and they will never go to school!
They say gacaca is for the national reconciliation, but who is there on trial? Only Hutus. It doesn’t concern the Tutsis. Who is a Hutu? He is a genocidaire! They are the only ones who committed genocide and yet so many Hutus died during the genocide as well. Those who killed them now run the gacaca courts and at least seven hundred and fifty Hutu are added to gacaca every year. Imprisonment in Rwanda is a tool just like the genocide is a tool. It is a tool to stay in power. The RPF even said so. After the genocide of 1994, the RPF told everyone to always be sure and talk about the genocide with everyone, especially foreigners, or else we will lose power in this country.
DB: Where did they say this
JCN : Radio Muhabura. It was January 1997 at 08:30 on a Sunday. I don’t remember the date exactly but everybody knows about it. You can ask people and they will tell you the RPF told everybody they must always talk about the genocide or else they are lost. It was announced by Antoine Mugesera and Rutaramara. They said, “We must portray ourselves as victims.” We (Diaspora) know how many people really got killed. We have the study from the University of Maryland.4 The RPF uses the genocide to ensure Hutu do not approach power. They try to control everything. When they took power, they renamed all the streets, reorganized the prefectures created provinces, and changed the spelling of many names. They did this to confuse investigators and erase that history from the minds of the next generation of Rwandans.
DB: That’s ironic you should mention that last point because one individual I met in Rwanda laughed at the map of Kigali I had because all the streets were labeled wrong. They were labeled with their old names. Moving on, one of the forgotten topics in the Great Lakes region is Burundi. As you know, in the space of less than a year, Burundi lost two Hutu presidents to assassinations. The first president who was assassinated, Melchior Ndadaye, was killed by the Armed Forces of Burundi (FAB) in Bujumbura.5
JCN: With the help of Paul Kagame.
DB: That was precisely my line of questioning. I have heard of such claims. Can you comment on that? Is there any truth to them?
JCN: Ok. The reason I know that RPF was involved is because when Ndadaye was killed, I was, at that time, politically active. My friends and I created the Ndadaye Foundation at the CEPGL headquarters in Gisenyi. It was part of an administration that was in five countries including Congo, Burundi, and Rwanda. After he was killed, we received some MPs (Members of Parliament) from Bujumbura who came to thank us for doing a great job because they really appreciated our unforgettable deeds. We all respected Ndadaye because he was democratic and respected all ethnic groups. He was working for his country and wanted to reunify Burundians. Unfortunately, President Buyoya got a job from the European Union (EU).6 I don’t know why people supported him.When President Ndadaye was elected, it could not be accepted by the RPF because a Hutu in power in Burundi, especially when Tutsi are trying to seize power in Rwanda… it could not happen. It would cause turmoil in Rwanda. That’s why they decided to kill President Ndadaye. For the continuation of Tutsi rule in both countries. The day he was killed, Paul Kagame was in Bujumbura. I was told by the MPs who came to visit us in Gisenyi that he was there in a hotel where he spent his holiday. During his stay, he met with the Chief of the Army, Bikomagu.
DB: And yet, if I recall correctly, Colonel Bikomagu was later acquitted for his role in the assassination.
JCN: Yea. They set up everything just like with Gatabazi and Bucyana.
DB: Does the Rwandan community believe the RPF was involved in the assassination?
JCN: Yes. In fact, President Ndadaye had many supporters in Rwanda. Thousands of people came to Gisenyi to support the foundation and I spoke to them. I remember when I talked to them and they were so keen to support the foundation. They supported people who wanted to bring democratic values to their countries. Of course, we must remember also the other Burundian Hutu president, who was killed along with President Habyarimana. His name was Cyprien Ntaryamira. Then, you had President Sylvestre Ntibantunganya escape to the U.S. Embassy and come out of hiding after the coup by Buyoya.
DB: How are relations between Rwanda and Burundi today?
JCN: The relations are still good because the government does the will of Kagame.
DB: Yet, current President Pierre Nkurunziza is a Hutu.
JCN: Yes, he’s a Hutu, but he is willing to leave him alone if he takes orders. We know that the former Chairman of the FDD (National Council for the Defense of Democracy-Front? for the Defense of Democracy) party was in Kigali supporting Paul Kagame officially.7 He was asked by Paul Kagame to remove some members of his party that did not agree with RPF policy in Burundi. After he tried to do so, he got in trouble with some old MPs who removed him instead. Today, he is in prison because he said four guys, including former President Ndayizeye, were planning a coup, but it was not true and Ndayizeye was dismissed from the courts.8
DB: This is a broad topic, but the single most influential event in your country recently is probably the Brugière arrest warrant. One thing…
JCN: Ok. I just remembered. The U.K. officer, the military officer who sent the fax to the U.N. was Colonel R.M. Connaughton of the British Army, based at Camberley, Surrey in England, the home of the British Military Academy. His nameand fax number appear at the top of the document. It was sent to Maurice Baril at the Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO) in the U.N. There was no cover letter explaining who sent it or why it was sent. There was no document confirming that it was received and accepted by the U.N. ad hoc authorities.
DB: Ok. Thank you.
JCN: You’re welcome.
DB: Ok. When the arrest warrant came out, there were large protests in Rwanda. What was behind all that?
JCN: The people were incited to demonstrate. First of all, the Rwandan people knew nothing. Most of them do not even know where the French embassy is. Those people had to be brought there by buses and trucks. Who paid for that? Those poor people? Who was angry with the French in the first place? Kagame and the RPF-the real criminals-who asked everyone to demonstrate. The demonstrators destroyed the French Embassy and the French Cultural Center. Rwandans demonstrated once before when ICTR prosecutor Carla Del Pointe went there. She was investigating RPF crimes also and wanted to try them at the ICTR. Why is it that Rwandans are only demonstrating when an international person is doing something the RPF doesn’t like?The way the country is run where people become so frustrated…they are in constant fear and terror. They are terrorized because they must do whatever the RPF tells them. During elections, people have to stand in line and vote one after another. The way it works, you have to go and stand behind the box of the person you are voting for, so everybody knows it. If you do not do this, your vote is lost and in some places, if you don’t vote RPF, the soldiers will ask you to go and vote again, this time for the RPF. In the same way, during demonstrations, you cannot stay at home because the abakada go to every house to see who is still at home. Anyone who is at home is threatened, “We will remember you.” Nobody can say no, yet most Rwandans who are protesting do not know who Brugière is at all. If the warrant was something that really had no basis, why does the RPF refuse to go and testify to clear their names? Why does Paul Kagame refuse to testify? He knows he has killed people. Those nine people could go to a French judge and explain what they did, but they don’t. Why not if they are innocent?For the French, it was about the French crew members who died in the plane with Habyarimana. When the Libyans shot that plane down years ago, Gaddafi turned over those who committed the crime. Why doesn’t Paul Kagame do the same? If the international community ever approaches him with criminal charges, he will threaten to use ordinary Rwandans who had nothing to do with it, like in these demonstrations.9
DB: In closing, I want to leave it open to you for any comments you may have about anything. Is there anything at all you would like to say, any focused message you would like to give or something you want to add?
JCN: What I want to say concerns the attitude of the American and British administrations before, during, and after the massacres in my country. The U.S. administration refused to intervene while Rwandans were getting killed. The administration refused to investigate when the American tourists were killed in the Congo by the RPF. The U.S. refused to investigate when Dian Fossey was killed. Inquires should be taken seriously by the powerful democratic countries. They should try to help us so all Rwandans can finally be free. There is no other way these nations can apologize to us for what happened other than by giving us freedom from these criminals. We need justice. To apologize to Rwandans, the international community must send the RPF to justice. We cannot accept anything else. I listen to how my kids talk about wanting to go to America, but at the same time, they are in exile because somebody in the White House helped the RPF kill their uncle and other people they loved. It’s an embarrassing situation for me as a father. It’s shameful and I get angry because I know the United States can still help us go home to a place where we won’t be killed or oppressed. Paul Kagame is killing his own people, even today. He’s killing and destroying everybody and now he’s blackmailing those who helped him, saying, “If you don’t do this for me, I’m going to tell everybody how you helped me take power,” or “If you don’t do this, I will do that.” Please don’t wait for Paul Kagame to kill more people. Now is the right time to listen to me as a Rwandan who honestly likes Americans. Please help us so we can have a free country to organize a democratic society. Rwandans will not cut ties with Americans after the RPF leaves. We know so many of you were not told the truth about what happened in my country. It is not the fault of the whole country, just those people in the administration who aided the RPF.That’s it. That’s what I wanted to say. For me personally, I want to see my kids raised back home in Rwanda. I want to see everybody’s kids grow up without being incriminated by what happened in 1994, or by what somebody says their parents did in 1994. We have to respect each other and we have to respect our ethnicity. We can’t be afraid of our neighbors. We cannot live that way. Please help those of us who can’t go back to help rebuild our country. We need support and it is possible. Thank you very much.
David Barouski is an African Affairs researcher focused on Central Africa and a Political Science student at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh?. He is a regular contributor to ZNet/ZMagazine. His work has also appeared in Waheen Online, the Somaliland Times, Golis News, Congo Vision, and the Congo Panorama. He authored the book, “Laurent Nkundabatware, his Rwandan Allies, and the ex-ANC Mutiny: Chronic Barriers to Lasting Peace in the Democratic Republic of the Congo,” and he traveled to the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Rwanda in 2006. He can be contacted at // BarouD@hush.comBarouD at hush.com.
Jean-Christophe? Nizeyimana is a Rwandan national from the Jenda (Nyabihu District) of the former Ruhengeri Prefecture. He holds a Master’s degree in Economics from Moscow University and is a former Professor at the High Institute of Management and Computing in Gisenyi. He is the author of “A Compendium of RPF Crimes,” “Hutus: Victims of Verbal Indoctrination,” and several other articles available at info-Burundi.net. He currently lives in exile.
1 Note: One fairly recent example of this occurred in January 2007, when the Ministry of Justice released eight thousand prisoners. (“Rwanda Announces Upcoming Release of 8,000 Prisoners,” Hirondelle News Agency. 25 January 2007.)
2 Note: Hundreds of Rwandans fled the gacaca courts for the Congo during the first two weeks April 2007. In June 2005, nearly ten thousand Rwandans fled to Burundi for the same reason. (“Hundreds of People Fleeing the Gacaca Tribunal Towards the RDC,” Hirondelle News Agency. 17 April 2007.)
3 Note: At the time this interview was conducted, Mr. Wolfowitz had not yet resigned from the World Bank.
5 Note: President Melchior Ndadaye was assassinated at the Muha Barracks by Tutsi Armed Forces of Burundi (FAB) soldiers from the 11th Armored Reconnaissance Battalion and the 1st and 2nd Parachute Battalions (led by Chief-of-Staff? Colonel Jean Bikomagu and former Burundian President, Colonel Jean-Baptiste? Bagaza) on 20 October 1993. Journalist Charles Onana uncovered documents from the International Christian Democrat stating they were warned on 18th October about the coup attempt and informed them General Paul Kagame was in Bujumbura travelling on a Burundian passport during the days leading up to the assassination. He reportedly met with outgoing President Pierre Buyoya and blessed the coup. Paul Baril was hired to investigate the coup threats and he reportedly concluded the RPA was actively involved. However, as a French mercenary involved in Operation Turquoise, Mr. Baril’s potential bias against the RPA should be noted. (Onana, Charles. “Les Secrets de la Justice Internationale.” English Translation. Paris, France: Editions Duboiris. 2005; Brugière, Jean-Louis?. “The Report by French Anti-Terrorist? Judge Jean-Louis? Brugière on the Shooting Down of Rwandan President Habyarimana’s Plane on 6 April 1994.” Article 45. English Translation. 17 November 2006.)
6 Note: Mr. Buyoya, a Hima, became Burundi’s President again in 1996. He received his military training in Europe and he is now a visiting fellow at Brown University in Rhode Island, U.S.A. The term “Hima” in this context, refers to a sub-group of Tutsi hailing from Southern Burundi.
7 Note: Shortly after Rwanda severed ties with France following the release of Judge Brugière’s arrest warrants, Chairman Rajab Hussein visited President Kagame at Village Urugwiro and told him, “I am here to assure the President of our government’s support at this time when relations (between Rwanda and France) are not good.” (“Burundi backs Rwanda on France,” Robert Mukombozi. The New Times. 30 November 2006.)
8 Note: In late August 2006, former Hutu President Domitien Ndayizeye was arrested by the Burundian Government and charged with plotting a coup that included a plan to assassinate President Nkurunziza, the Secret Service Chief, and several military officials. Some of the journalists and radio personalities who reported on his detention were accosted and thrown into jail on claims they were threatening public order. Suspected rebel leader Alain Mugabarabona said he was tortured by the Documentation Nationale (Burundi’s Presidential Guard and police force) and forced to implicate Mr. Ndayizeye in the plot. (“Burundi’s Ex-President? in Court,” BBC News. 25 August 2006.)The case took an interesting turn in late December 2006 when prosecutor Gaudence Ndayizeye said D. Ndayizeye and Mr. Mugabarabona met with General Laurent Nkundabatware, General James Kabarebe, and General Salim Saleh to plan the coup. He called the group the “Club of Kampala” and said their aim was to get a sympathetic rebel group in power (led by Mugabarabona) that would allow Burundi to be used as a rear base for General Nkundabatware to attack the Congo with the help of Rwanda and Uganda. (“Guerre à l’Est : Voici Comment est Aidé Nkunda pour Attaquer la RDC : Révélation sur un Réquisitoire,” DigitalCongo? 3.0. English Translation. 23 December 2006. http://www.digitalcongo.net/article/39809.) Rwandan military officials denounced the allegations as unfounded and baseless.Burundi’s Tutsi Minister of Defense General Germain Niyoyankana denied there was ever any coup plot and claimed the Army’s intelligence division had neither received nor observed any indications of such a plot. In the end, Mr. Ndayizeye, former Vice President Alphonse Marie Kadege, FAB officer Damien Ndarisigaranye, lawyer Isidore Ruyikri, and politician Deo Niyonzima were acquitted of all charges on 15 January 2007. Mr. Mugabarabona was sentenced to 20 years and Tharcisse Ndayishimiye, who admitted attending meetings with the accused, was sentenced to 15 years.
9 Note: The ICTR ruled they have no jurisdiction to try President Kagame and other RPF/RPA officials accused of committing crimes in 1994. The Rwandan Government has asked the International Court of Justice to overturn the warrant. In particular, General Charles Kayonga and General Jack (Jackson) Nkurunziza (Nziza) claim the warrant has restricted them to the point they can no longer carry on the duties their respective jobs require.
Here, at last, is the completed Bruguière Report in an English language version we here at CM/P just kinda whipped together over the last 11 months or so. It continues to make for compelling reading, even for those not particularly well-versed in the recent history of Central Africa, and especially in light of the current renewed aggression from Rwanda and Uganda into NE Congo.
Those who were following the report in its serialization here, the last trance  left off with item #238–so the final installment [tranche 6] would begin with item #239.
This was tough sledding, as the language of the law is not always readily accessible to the layman. But the information contained in this report is of sufficient importance to have made the translation veritably zip by over this last year.
Finally, before sending you off into this monument to the law’s attempted redemption of a tortured history, we would like you to note that the date of this posting is the 17th anniversary of the R.P.F. invasion of Rwanda from Uganda–1 October 1990. This date marks the beginning of a campaign by Western (US/UK/Israeli) interests to replace the old colonial and neo-colonial productive relations in Africa with new, highly militarized and hyper-exploitive, unto totally destructive, relations as a way to guarantee the continued growth of Western Waste Capital. The cost of this campaign to date is upward of 9 million African souls–and most of this killing is excused because it is considered in the ‘Never Again’ spirit that moves the Holocaust, Human Rights and Stop the Fucking Genocide Industries.
So, whereas the putative genocide in Darfur/Sudan is the result of Islamic malevolence; the millions upon millions of dead in Central Africa are considered fall out from poorly formed Rwandan National Security policies–all those Hutu and Interahamwe and their wifes and kids and grandkids and, by now, great-grandkids, were all known participants in the Rwandan genocide of 6 April to 16 July 1994, and therefore needed killing to protect future innocent victims. It’s the ultimate Victims’ Justice: Endless Revenge [with a big cash bonus and a coltan franchise on the back end].
But we will return later on to matters of just how WRONG the VICTIMS’ RIGHTS MOVEMENT got things. For now, welcome to Judge Bruguière’s Parisian courtroom. When the bell rings, go to History. –mc]
THE REPORT BY FRENCH ANTI-TERRORIST JUDGE JEAN-LOUIS BRUGUIÈRE ON THE SHOOTING DOWN OF RWANDAN PRESIDENT HABYARIMANA’S PLANE ON 6 APRIL 1994—(translated from the French by CM/P)
REQUEST FOR THE ISSUANCE OF INTERNATIONAL ARREST WARRANTS
JUDICIAL ORDER TO BE COMMUNICATED TO THE SUPERIOR COURT OF PARIS
I, Jean-Louis Bruguière, Premier Vice-Président of the Tribunal de Grande Instance of Paris,
In view of articles 131 and 145 of the Penal Code,
(1)Considering that on 6 April 1994 at 8:25 pm, the Falcon 50 of the President of the Republic of Rwanda, registration number “9XR-NN”, on its return from a summit meeting in DAR-ES-SALAAM (Tanzania) as it was on approach to Kanombe International Airport in KIGALI, was shot down by two Surface-to-Air Missiles; and
(2)That all passengers:
– Juvénal HABYARIMANA, Chief of State of Rwanda,
– Cyprien NTARYAMIRA, Chief of State of Burundi,
– Déogratias NSABIMANA, Chief of Staff of Rwandan Armed Forces (R.A.F),
– Elie SAGATWA, Colonel and Chief of the Military Cabinet of the Rwandan president,
– Thaddée BAGARAGAZA, Major and executive officer in the ‘maison militaire’ of the Rwandan president,
– Juvénal RENZAHO, foreign affairs adviser to the Rwandan president,
– Emmanuel AKINGENEYE, personal physician to the Rwandan president,
– Bernard CIZA, Minister of Planning in the government of Burundi,
– Cyriaque SIMBIZI, Communications Minister of Burundi,
And the members of the French flight crew:
– Jacky HERAUD, pilot,
– Jean-Pierre MINABERRY, co-pilot,
– Jean-Marc PERRINE, flight engineer
Perished in the explosion of the aircraft; and
(3)That the greatest part of the debris of the plane fell within the confines, even on the Residence, of President HABYARIMANA where his family was living; and
(4)That this attack, quickly brought to the attention of the Rwandan authorities, and notably to the Presidential Guard—as was confirmed by General BAGOSORA—must have immediately provoked a violent reaction from extremist Hutu, and triggered the genocide of the Tutsi minority; and
(5)Considering that in the atmosphere of extreme confusion induced by the insurrectional situation provoked by the destruction of the presidential aircraft, any number of rumors were circulated as to the origins of the attack; and
(6)That thus, as early as the morning of the 7th of April, the first rumor to originate in Rwanda accused the Belgian military, members of the UN force in Rwanda (UNAMIR), of being the originators of the attack, a rumor quickly denied by the international press which had designated the extremist Hutu as its authors; and
(7)That in support of this latter thesis, it was put forward that the Rwandan President, Juvénal HABYARIMANA, had acquiesced to the demands of the “Rwandan Patriotic Front” (R.P.F.) by announcing at the summit meeting of 6 April 1994 that upon his return to KIGALI, he would put in place the institutions for a transition government that were prescribed in the peace plan, the ARUSHA ACCORDS of 4 August 1993; and
(8)Notwithstanding that the gravity of a situation which should have demanded a reaction proportionate to the events, both the international community and the new government of Rwanda led by the R.P.F. have demonstrated an incredible lack of resolve in this matter, President KAGAME even formally opposing any investigation into the destruction of the president’s plane; and
(9)That, however, as early as 7 April, the President of the UN Security Council invited the Secretary General of the United Nations to collect, by any and all means at his disposal, all useful information concerning the attack and to submit a report to the Council without delay; and
(10)That on the 12th of April, the Belgian Council of Ministers demanded of the International Civil Aeronautics Organization (I.C.A.O.) that it initiate an investigation; and
(11)That the 21 April 1994, seriously concerned about the situation in Rwanda, the UN Security Council invited the new Secretary General to give him all the information on the attack; and
(12)That 2 May 1994, pursuant to a written request by Mr Jean KAMBANDA, Prime Minister of the interim government of Rwanda, addressed to Mr (Jacques-)Roger BOOH BOOH, Special Representative of the Secretary General of the UN in Rwanda, General Roméo DALLAIRE, Commander of the UNAMIR forces in Rwanda confirmed in writing to the Prime Minister his commitment to create an international investigative commission; and
(13)The 17 May 1994, the Security Council, in a new resolution, reminded the Secretary General of his previous demands; and
(14)That in June 1994, the members of the “Organization of African Unity” (O.A.U.) met in TUNISIA, requesting the creation of an impartial investigating commission; and
(15)That a report dated 28 June 1994 from Mr René DEGNI SEGUI, special envoy to Rwanda from the United Nations Commission on Human Rights, stated that the attack against the president’s plane was the cause of the events that occurred in Rwanda, but having requested the setting up of a commission of inquiry, he was told that the UN did not have the budget for such things; and
(16)That further, in a report of 3 December 1994 submitted to the Secretary General of the UN, a commission of experts recommended the creation of an international tribunal and once again called for the adoption by the sub-commission “of the necessity to investigate, among other things, the events that led to the current situation, notably the attack against the airplane carrying the Presidents of Burundi and Rwanda”; and
(17)That this new initiative had no more effect than previous ones; and
(18)That 21 December 1997, the principle representatives of the O.A.U., meeting in ADDIS ABABA, decided on the creation of an “international group made up of personalities who were sufficiently objective and thoroughly knowledgeable of the region” to lead an investigation into the genocide in Rwanda and giving equal attention to the death of President HABYARIMANA, and in its final report, submitted 29 May 2000, the O.A.U. recommended to “the international commission of jurist to open an independent inquest to determine who was responsible for the attack”; and
(19)That France, unlike the Rwandan authorities, had likewise solicited the UN to open an international investigation, as was reported by Mr Bruno DELAYE, in testimony given 19 May 1998 before the (French) Commission on National Defense and the French Armed Forces and the National Assembly’s Commission on Foreign Affairs that had been created, 3 March 1998, “the fact-finding Mission on the military operations conducted in Rwanda by France, from other countries of the O.A.U. between 1990 and 1994”; and
(20)That 18 March 1994, Mr Kofi ANNAN, Secretary General of the UN solicited the creation of a commission of inquiry “into the actions of the UN during the genocide in Rwanda in 1994” and that its report, submitted 15 December 1999, made no reference to the absence of any investigation into the attack; and
(21)Considering that despite the resolutions or recommendations, no international investigation was ever initiated into the attack; and
(22)That furthermore, as already mentioned, the new power issued from the ranks of the F.P.R. and installed in Rwanda 19 July 1994, after the military victory over the regime of President HABYARIMANA, did not, itself either, try to establish an inquiry despite many demands to do so, emanating primarily from Mr. Faustin TWAGIRAMUNGU, the Rwandan Prime Minister at that time, Mr. Alphonse Marie NKUBITO, the Minister of Justice, Mr. Sixbert MUSANGAMFURA, the Chief of the central intelligence service, as well as from the government of Burundi, desiring to know the truth about the assassination of its President Cyprien NTARYAMIRA; and
(23)That it was shown that all the demands had been formally rejected by General Paul KAGAME, at that time Vice-President and Minister of Defense of the Republic of Rwanda; and
(24)That this position of Paul KAGAME’s was notably attested to by Simon ISONERE, the Rwandan Director General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, who testified before this court on 8 September 2000 that during his last ministerial duties, he learned that a demand for an international inquiry had been made by the Prime Minister and the Minister of Justice Alphonse Marie NKUBITO and that this demand, presented in a letter to the representative of the UN in Rwanda, had been intercepted by Paul KAGAME, who, furious about this initiative, had insisted on the destruction of every trace of this communication; and
(25)That it was also corroborated by Sixbert MUSANGAMFURA, named General Secretary of the government before being appointed to the double functions of being in charge of the central intelligence service and serving as Secretary of the National Commission on Security presided over by General Paul KAGAME; and
(26)That Sixbert MUSANGAMFURA said in effect at the time of his examination on 15 April 2002 in Finland, that on 7 January 1995, he was called to Paul KAGAME’s home in the along with Lt Colonel Karake KARENZI, chief of the military intelligence services, and that during the course of this interview, it was suggested to Paul KAGAME that a team of investigators be put together with the duty of collecting information about the attack on the presidential plane for the purpose of answering the questions that would eventually be posed by a foreign government or by the international press, and that this suggestion drew a violent reaction from KAGAME, and that later Karake KARENZI advised MUSANGAMFURA to drop this whole subject if he didn’t want to find himself in a world of trouble; and
(27)That therefore, since, in the words of the Ivorian jurist and special representative of the UN Human Rights Commission, Mr. René DEGNI SEGUI, “the attack on the plane constitutes the Gordian Knot in this whole affair”, it can only be concluded that Paul KAGAME was thoroughly and constantly opposed to any move that would tend to shed light on this attack; and
(28)That parallel to this situation, a double parliamentary commission was set up in Belgium: First, on 24 July 1996, concerning the murders of ten Belgian soldiers in Rwanda, the Commission on Foreign Affairs of the National Assembly established an “ad hoc group” to determine just what information relative to Rwanda the Belgian civilian and military had during the period between the Arusha Accords (4 August 1993) and the beginning of the genocide (April 1994), then on the other side of Capitol, on 28 February 1997, the Belgian Senate created “the Special Commission on Rwanda”, charged with continuing the work of the “ad hoc group”; and
(29)That on 3 March 1998, the French Commission on the National Defense and the Armed Forces and the Commission on Foreign Affairs set up the “Mission on information concerning military operations conducted in Rwanda by France, other nations and the UN between 1990 and 1994”; and
(30)That it is proper to underline that the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (I.C.T.R.), created 8 November 1994 by Resolution 955 of the UN Security Council to determine the facts about genocide and crimes against Humanity committed in Rwanda between 1 January and 31 December 1994, did not want to look into the attack of 6 April 1994; and
(31)Considering that it is in this context of inaction even unto obstruction with regard to any movement toward the establishment of an investigating commission to look into the attack of 6 April 1994, that on 31 August 1997, Madame Sylvie, Marie, Simone MINABERRY, daughter of Mr. Jean-Pierre MINABERRY, pilot of the Falcon 50 of the Rwandan President, filed a civil complaint with the Chief Justice (Doyen des Juges d’Instruction) of Paris against X number of military officers for acts of terrorism that led to the death of one or more persons, and for complicity in said crimes; and
(32)That on 27 March 1998, the aforementioned judicial information was presented to the Chief Justice in charge of assassination carried out within a terrorist enterprise, facts falling within the purview of articles 221-3, 421-1-1, 421-3 of the Penal Code, and 706-16 and beyond of the Code of Penal Procedure; and
(33)That pursuant to an order of the court dated 27 October 2006, an additional brief relating to assassinations committed in pursuit of a terrorist enterprise, complicity in assassinations committed in pursuit of a terrorist enterprise – as concerns the passengers and members of the flight crew of the Falcon 50 of the President of the Republic of Rwanda, registration number 9XRNN, who perished in the course of this attack – and the association of criminals with a view toward the preparation of acts of terrorism, was delivered to the High Court of Paris on 31 October 2006; and
(34)That the present information insists that others must be included as plaintiffs in this civil order: Madame Annick PERRINE, widow of Mr. Jean-Michel PERRINE, navigator/flight engineer on the Falcon 50 and Madame Françoise HERAUD, wife of the captain of the aircraft, as well as Mr. Bernard HABYARIMANA RUGWIRO, Mr. Jean-Luc HABYARIMANA, Mr. Léon Jean-Baptiste Aimable and Mme. Marie Merci HABYARIMANA, Mme. Jeanne NTILIUAMUNDA, Mme. Marie Aimée HABYARIMANA NTILIUAMUNDA and Mme. Agathe KANZIGA, wife of HABYARIMANA; and
(35)Considering that within the framework of this inquest conducted by the National Anti-Terrorist Division (N.A.T.D.), today the Sub-Directorate Against Terrorism (S.D.A.T.), the investigations were consistently carried out within the geopolitical context surrounding this attack, the circumstances that prevailed at the conception and planning of this project and the conditions of its execution; and
(36)That for this investigation, every lead coming out of a national institution, a political authority, members of international organizations, the international press even unto rumors, was meticulously explored and all the various supporting data supporting verified; and
(37)That to this end, the investigation based itself on the work of the parliamentary Commission on the National Defense and the French Armed Forces and the Commission on Foreign Affairs, which, on 3 March 1998, had created “the Mission of information on the military operations conducted in Rwanda by France, other nations and the UN, between 1990 and 1994”, on the work of two Belgian parliamentary commissions created 24 July 1996 and 28 February 1997, on the testimony collected either in France, or from the international interrogatory commissions questioning representatives of the Hutu community, but especially members of the R.P.F. or of its military branch, the R.P. A., some of whom were very close to President Paul KAGAME as well as the material evidence; and
(38)Considering that the first information and available evidence allowed the presumption of five possible hypotheses as to who ordered and who executed this attack; and
(39)That the first of these hypotheses pointed to the Army of Burundi, a large majority of whom are Tutsi and were considered hostile to Burundian President Cyprien NTARYAMIRA; and
(40)That the possible implication of the Burundian Army was supported by its past participation in violent actions against Hutu personalities; and
(41)That also, during an attempted military coup, the mono-ethnic Burundian Army was responsible for the assassination, on 22 October 1993, of President Melchior NDADAYE, the first Hutu to be democratically elected president on 1 June 1993; and
(42)That this assassination seems to have been instigated because of a project President NDADAYE proposed to reform the Burundian Army which had excerised an influence on the nation’s political life; and
(43)That his successor, Cyprien NTARYAMIRA, had resumed this same project, he, too, figuring that the Burundian Army was inordinately influential; and
(44)That along side these reform initiatives, rumors of an attack against President NTARLYAMIRA had circulated in 1993, pushed mainly by Tutsi political parties; and
(45)That in October 1993, at the request of Rwandan President Juvénal HABYARIMANA, who had been informed that the Burundian President, Melchior NDADAYE, was in danger of being killed, Paul BARRIL went to BUJUMBURA to evaluate the threats, and while there he gathered information on the imminence of “a coup d’état” which was being prepared by Tutsi officers, supported by Rwandan military officers guided by Paul KAGAME, who was, at that time, traveling with a Burundian passport; and
(46)That furthermore, it turns out that on 5 April 1994, the border police and customs officials at Franco-Swiss airport of GENEVA-COINTRIN were put on alert to the entrance into France from Geneva of a Burundian national, Athemon RWAMIGABO, a Lt Colonel in the Burundian Army, and the pilot of the Burundian presidential Falcon 50; that while being checked at the border, it was noted that this Tutsi officer was carrying in his attaché case political documents regarding the movements of the opposition and sketches of an aircraft on a landing approach; and
(47)That whereas RWAMIGABO, who was close to General Pierre BUYOYA who had taken power by toppling President Sylvestre NTIDANTUNGANYA, the successor to President Cyprien NTARYAMIRA, could not be examined because of his diplomatic status, a diligent examination of the documents he was carrying showed that they had no real operational significance but were, for the most part, meant to be used as propaganda or as instruments of internal political provocation; and
(48)That notwithstanding the inter-ethnic tensions that were also prevalent in Burundi, the hypothesis that the attack had been organized by the Burundian military had to be discarded; and
(49)That according to the different testimony obtained in the investigation, it was established that President Cyprien NTARYAMIRA had not decided to return in the company of the Rwandan president, on HABYARIMANA’s presidential plane, until the very last minute before departure from DAR-ES-SALAAM, making it impossible to organize the material for an attack against him on Rwandan soil; and
(50)That this unintended return trip was also confirmed by a declassified American diplomatic telegram sent to Undersecretary of State for African Affairs, George MOOSE, on 7 April 1994, while on a mission to SRI-LANKA, as well as being addressed to various American diplomats; and
(51)Considering that equal attention was paid to the implication in the attack of members of the political opposition to President Juvénal HABYARIMANA known as “moderate Hutus” among the officers of the Rwandan Armed Forces (R.A.F.); and
(52)That this hypothesis showed no more promise than the previous one; and
(53)That its origins were found to be in a meeting held 4 April 1994 at the home of Madam the Prime Minister Agathe UWILINGIYIMANA, a member of the political party known as the “Mouvement Démocratiqe Républicain” (M.D.R.); and
(54)That according to the principles of this hypothesis, during this soirée which was attended by some civilians and some junior officers of the R.A.F., all originally from the South of Rwanda, Agathe UWILINGIYIMANA, noting that the Arusha Accords were stalled, had suggested the possibility of toppling President HABYARIMANA; and
(55)That it appears, in fact, that this meeting never had the objective that certain people have imputed to it, but that its existence was given significance in a manipulation by Radio “R.T.M.L.”, close to the milieu of the extremist Hutus, in order to discredit through spreading false rumors of the preparation of a coup d’état, Mme UWILINGIYIMANA, the serving Prime Minister at the time, who would be assassinated the day after the attack by members of the Presidential Guard while she was under the protection of the Belgian troops of UNAMIR; and
(56)That thus this provocation broadcast by radio “R.T.M.L.” had, if not as an objective then at least as a consequence, the effect of bring about the physical elimination of Mme UWILINGIYIMANA by the “interahamwe” militia that suspected her of being close to the R.P.F.; and
(57)Considering that other rumors designated “foreigners” as being the origins of this attack; and
(58)That behind the generic vocabulary, in fact, there were two countries being charged, Belgium and France; and
(59)That the implication of Belgium seemed to arise from an ‘anti-Belgian climate’ prevalent at the time in Kigali, fed by several factors that resulted from the role played by the Belgian contingent in the UNAMIR; and
(60)That in effect, the entrance into Kigali on 28 December 1993 of the Rwandan Patriotic Army (R.P.A.) battalion to be installed in the “Conseil National pour le Développement” (C.N.D.) [the National Council for Development, the site of the Rwandan National Assembly and a militarily important piece of high-ground in Kigali—cm/p], under the protection of a Belgian UN battalion, and especially the behavior of certain of the Belgian UNAMIR soldiers contributed to this resentment, as did the mission of a group of Belgian soldiers considered suspect when on 6 April 1994 they escorted some ‘officials’ of the R.P.F. into the Akagera national park, the objective of which mission a Belgian parliamentary investigating commission was unable to determine, nor was it able to determine the identities of the R.P.F. ‘Officials’ escorted, while ten [sic] of the Belgian UN troops were murdered 7 April 1994 by the soldiers of the R.A.F. who believed them to be the authors of the attack on the presidents’plane, all greatly contributed to giving credence to this theory; and
(61)That notwithstanding the shadowy zones, largely the results of the climate of fear that prevailed at the time in Kigali, and the fecklessness of UNAMIR in controlling the situation, no element in the investigation supported the hypothesis that the Belgians were responsible for the attack on the plane; and
(62)That France was equally designated as having taken part in this operation; and
(63)That in June 1994, a Belgian journalist charged that the French military participated in the attack, basing this charge on a document that she was sent, in which the author claims he, along with two other leaders of the “Coalition pour la Défense de la République” (C.D.R.) [a party that split off from the ruling M.R.N.D. and was considered, esp by UN General Roméo Dallaire in his book, to be ‘Extremist Hutu’ and to stand rigidly against the Arusha Accords, but which we now know was thoroughly infiltrated by R.P.F. agents—cm/p] ordered the attack on the Falcon 50 and that the attack was executed by two French officers stationed in Rwanda; and
(64)That according to the same article, which was made up of various rumors that were spread worldwide right after the attack, these two French officers from la Direction Générale de la Sécurité Extérieure (D.G.S.E.) [France’s MI6 or foreign intelligence agency—cm/p] were supposed to be the ones who fired the missiles; and
(65)That in August 1994, a mysterious group known as “The International Strategical and Tactical Organization” (I.S.T.O.) submitted to the Rwandan ambassador to Canada a document entitled “The Results of the Investigation into the assassinations of Presidents Cyprien NTARYAMIRA of Burundi and Juvénal HABYARIMANA of Rwanda on 6 April 1994 – source: document of the Central Intelligence Agency”, which revealed to the Rwandan government in exile the implications and participation of the French government in the attack carried out by the two military officer/agents of the D.G.S.E.; and
(66)That the investigations probing this organization, until now unknown, its presumed activities, its services provided ostentatiously without remuneration, all suggest that it was composed of a group of con artists, well-informed on the military and political situations in the Great Lakes region, and that it most notably took advantage of France’s declaration of its intention to intervene in Rwanda with a humanitarian operation which brought about on 16 June 1994 a protest from the “Rwandan Patriotic Front” (R.P.F.) declaring that it would consider French troops to be hostile; and
(67)That the more dubious activities of this alleged international organization of anglo-saxon origins, aimed toward the pulling off of financial scams, had also to be closely linked to information emanating from two different sources, one Belgian, the other British, purporting that the two missiles used in the attack had come from stocks seized by the French Army in 1991 during the first Gulf war with Iraq; and
(68)That this information presented as verification, as was done by the I.S.T.O., of the implication of France in the attack of 6 April 1994, had to be formally refuted by the investigations into the origins of the missiles that found they came from an official arms delivery by the U.S.S.R to UGANDA; and
(69)That it was thus a matter of a sort of disinformation having been initiated or facilitated by a foreign intelligence service in order to discredit France in a political scheme in the absence of any independent investigation; that it was the same with the intervention of the I.S.T.O. whose open activities gave cause to believe it was linked to the C.I.A. and that it had the same objective in such a business venture; and
(70)That the investigation and the testimony gathered did not then lend any veracity to the allegations that France had been the originator of the attack; and
(71)Considering that members of the HABYARIMANA family, known as “the Akazu” [meaning Little House—cm/p], were also implicated in the attack and were supposed to have worked with “extremist Hutu” from the “Coalition pour la Défense de la République” (C.D.R.) party and officers from the “Rwandan Armed Forces” (R.A.F.); and
(72)That quickly after the attack, part of the international press had designated President HABYARIMANA’s wife as the one who had ordered the attack on behalf of the members of the “Akazu” who were worried about their President’s weakly accepting to go along with the Arusha Accords that were seen as damaging to their interests; and
(73)That, however, the analysis of the facts immediately following on the attack had to show that, in the general panic that prevailed at all levels of the R.A.F., manifestly unprepared for the death of their President and the Chief of Staff of the Army, the influential personalities in the regime and the members of the “Akazu” took refuge in Western embassies; and
(74)That the President’s wife and her family were evacuated to the Central African Republic on 9 April; and
(75)That in order to deal with the assassination of the President, which had completely disorganized the workings of government and caught the military completely off-guard, since their Chief of Staff also perished in the attack, a crisis committee composed of military officers was set up during the night of 6-7 April 1994, in the presence of the Commander of the UNAMIR forces, General Roméo DALLAIRE and his adjutant, Belgian Colonel Luc MARCHAL; and
(76)That the refusal to place the R.A.F. under the authority of the Prime Minister, Madame Agathe UWILINGIYIMANA, who came from an opposition party, was categorical, as she was considered “pro-R.P.F.”; and
(77)That the establishment of this crisis committee was subsequently interpreted as a coup d’état on the part of the R.A.F., when on 9 April an interim government was put in place without the participation of the R,P.F., and the President of the Parliament, Théodore SINDIKIUBWABO, was named interim President of the Republic; and
(78)That this thesis was principally developed in articles published in the “Tribune of the People”, a Rwandan review close to the R.P.F., that had stated that President HABYARIMANA was killed by four officers of his presidential guard, though the elements of support for this story were subsequently shown to be untrue by an investigation based notably on testimony from officers of the UNAMIR; and
(79)That, furthermore, the members of the C.D.R. had no reason to attack the life of President HABYARIMANA; and
(80)That, in effect, if these latter so-called “extremists” had earlier rejected the Arusha Accords of 4 August 1993, they subsequently demanded and received, in the beginning of April 1994, with the agreement of the international community, a seat for a representative of their party in the future transitional national assembly; and
(81)That in this regard, Enoch RUHIGIRA, ex-director of the Rwandan Presidential cabinet, had to evoke the directives given him by President HABYARIMANA on the eve of the summit meeting in DAR-ES-SALAAM instructing him to meet on 6 April 1994 with Mme Agathe UWILINGIYIMANA in order to define the conditions for placing a member of the C.D.R. on the list of delegates before the composition of the transitional National Assembly; and
(82)That this political move had, on the other hand, been formally fought by the R.P.F., which had considered, as stated by Mr Faustin TWAGIRAMUNGU, Prime Minister of the first national unity government put in place the 19th of July 1994, before the Belgian Parliamentary Commission, that “the introduction of the C.D.R. into Parliament was the equivalent of a declaration of war”; and
(83)That the impasse between the C.D.R. and the R.P.F., as noted by the Belgian Colonel Luc MARCHAL of the UNAMIR, made it difficult to apply the Arusha Accords; and
(84)That as regards the R.A.F., it was clear that their forces were mal-equipped and little trained, unlike the R.P.F./A., and that their heavy arms were under the control of the UNAMIR; and
(85)That, what’s more, the R.A.F. had only a very weak anti-aircraft system and had no missiles; and
(86)That, on the contrary, investigations showed that the R.P.F./A. had surface-to-air missiles of the types SAM 14 and SAM 16; and
(87)That therefore, all the investigations, and notably all the testimony gathered, greatly weakened the hypothesis placing responsibility for the attack on ‘extremist’ Hutus, because it would have benefited neither the “Akazu”, nor the C.D.R., nor even the R.A.F., who were all convinced of the necessity of implementing the Arusha Accords; and
(88)Considering, on the other hand, that the investigations focusing on the possible implication of the R.P.F. in the planning of this attack and its realization had allowed the propping up this hypothesis and the determining of the circumstances under which it was realized; and
(89)That the testimony gathered, especially that from Tutsi members of the R.P.F. or those who had belonged to this political formation and ex-officers of the R.P.A., certain of whom were even personal guards close to Paul KAGAME, the verifications undertaken and the material elements gathered, especially about the missiles, established that Paul KAGAME, along with members of his general staff, had, after the signing of the Arusha Accords in August 1993, conceived this operation that he had carefully planned, and that he recruited the officers charged with putting the plan in place and supervising its execution; and
(90)That, thus, they decided the conditions under which the project had to be conceived, within the context of a scenario to seize power that would not have been allowable under the Arusha Accords, at least in the short term; that also the majority were identified as officers in the R.P.F., all of them close to Paul KAGAME, having taken part in the development of this criminal project, in the organization of the means to its realization and its execution on 6 April 1994 at the time the presidential Falcon 50 was returning late from the summit in DAR-ES-SALAAM; and
(91)Considering that the beginnings of this plot physically to eliminate the sitting president of Rwanda, go back, according to elements of this investigation, to 1991, at the time that the multi-party system was initiated; and
(92)That the latter allowed political opponents of President Habyarimana and of his single party M.R.N.D. to come out of hiding and create their own movement; and
(93)That as of 1992, the principal opposition parties, the “Mouvement Démocratique Républicain” (M.D.R.), the “Parti Libéral” (P.L.), the “Parti Démocratique Chrétien” (P.D.C.), and the “Parti Social Démocrate” (P.S.D.), entered the government and occupied the office of Prime Minister as well as holding various other ministerial portfolios; and
(94)That from then on these parties, under the name “Forces Démocratiques pour le Changement” (F.D.C.)[Democratic Forces for Change], organized peace talks with the R.P.F. which had, however, since the failure of the 1 October 1990 invasion, continued its armed incursions into Rwandan territory, incursions which had brought about in reprisal the massacres of Tutsi civilians; and
(95)That on 5 June 1992, while these opposition parties were meeting in BRUSSELS with Colonel Alexis KANYARENGWE, president of the R.P.F., and despite the cease fire signed that same day, the R.P.A. violated this cease fire and seized several localities in Rwanda; and
(96)That taking advantage of its armed offensives, the R.P.F. sought to impose its leadership and its strategy on these opposition parties which were its political allies, forcing them to support its military operations; and
(97)That each time splits developed in the directorate of the F.D.C., its President, Faustin TWAGIRAMUNGU, followed the orders of the R.P.F., while other members of the leadership gave their support to President HABYARIMANA; and
(98)That in September 1992, another secret meeting was organized in BRUSSELS between the parties of the F.D.C. and Paul KAGAME, and that on 5 January 1993, a protocol of agreement establishing the distribution of ministerial portfolios in the future broad-based transitional governement (B.B.T.G.), 5 for the R.P.F., 5 for the M.R.N.D., 4 for the M.D.R., 3 for the P.S.D., 3 for the P.L. and 1 for the P.D.C.; and
(99)That, however, in February 1993, following a generalized offensive by the R.P.F. in response to the ethnic and political troubles of January 1993, the opposition parties at the heart of the “Democratic Forces for Change” experienced new differences of opinion and their dissidents gave their support to the presidential movement; and
(100)That in this context of ethnic and political tensions over the fundamental conquest of power, in August 1993 the Arusha Accords were signed proposing to settle the political crisis in Rwanda; and
(101)That these Accords planned for the constitution, under the protection of the United Nations, of a legal State under the responsibility of the broad-based transitional government (B.B.T.G.) for a period not to exceed 22 months, at the end of which national elections must be held with the aim of installing a transitional National Assembly and organizing the return of refugees and the creation of a new national army, whose enlisted soldiers would be made up of 60% from the R.A.F. and 40% from the R.P.A., and whose officers corps would be drawn 50-50 from each, the Chief of Staff of the Army would come from the F.A.R. and that of the Gendarmerie from the R.P.A.; and
(102)That in view of the information and elements gathered by this investigation, it has been confirmed that for Paul KAGAME the physical elimination of President HABYARIMANA had become essential as a means to achieve his political ends from October 1993; and
(103)That, in fact, the relationship of political forces, due in large part to the numerical inferiority of the Tutsi electorate, would not permit him to win the elections called for in the political process laid out in the Arusha Accords without the support of the opposition parties; and
(104)That KAGAME’s refusal to apply the Arusha Accords is born out by many testimonies from various political players on the Rwandan and International scenes; and
(105)That Christopher HAKIZABERA, who, after the coup d’état against General Juvénal HABYARIMANA, rejoined the ranks of the R.P.F. in 1990, and then left the organization in 1995 fearing he would be physically eliminated as had been other dignitaries of the regime such as Théoneste LIZINDE and Seth SENDASHONGA, reported during a hearing in Milan on 6 September 2000, that Paul KAGAME, after the negotiation of the Arusha Accords on 4 August 1993, had declared to his partisans that the R.P.F. had never wanted nor needed these negotiations, but that they ‘had decided to play along’ and that he did not believe in the negotiations and ‘would remain at the ready because the fighting would be hard’; and
(106)That in confirmation of the terms of a letter he had sent to the United Nations in August 1999, he put forward that Paul KAGAME, after the failure of the R.P.F. to form around his command a common front against President HABYARIMANA, had ‘elaborated a macabre plan that would surely lead the country into chaos: the death of President HABYARIMANA . . . considered a major obstacle to the R.P.F.’s taking power’; and
(107)That he further reported that at the time of a political meeting held in Uganda after the passage of the Arusha Accords of 4 August 1993, Paul KAGAME had made it know to his partisans that the negotiations would serve as a way of gaining time for the military plan as well as for the purposes of neutralizing the little parties and fooling the people as to his real intentions; and
(108)That Christopher HAKIZABERA’s declarations were corroborated by those of Jean-Pierre MUGABE, another R.P.F. dissident who was a member of the “Directorate Military Intelligence (D.M.I.)”, the intelligence service of the “Rwandan Patriotic Army” (R.P.A.); and
(109)That having been heard 13 March 2001, in the context of this inquest, he stated that “the elimination of the Rwandan President had been a strategy developed by the R.P.F. because despite the accords that could have been favorable to them, the prospect of the elections to come within twenty-two months could not have brought them victory as they were a . . . minority party” and that “despite the accords, Paul KAGAME had continued to meet with his troops on the ground to insist that they not believe in the accords and keep themselves ever ready to resume combat”; and
(110)That Jean BARAHINYURA, former member of the R.P.F., who in 1990 became a member of its executive committee and commissioner of documentation, before leaving the rebels in 1991, confirmed this strategy of Paul KAGAME; and
(111)That heard 30 October 2002, he cited that with other executives of the R.P.F. or those close to its ‘hard core’, he had become aware in 1990 of certain confidential information—secrets of the organization—among which “the most important was that already at the time there was a plan to eliminate President HABYARIMANA” and that having learned subsequently that this project of elimination began to take on consistency, he decided to leave the rebel movement; and
(112)That this secret strategy developed by the R.P.F. was justified in part by the analysis of the political situation in 1993 that found little support for the hegemonic aspirations of Paul KAGAME; and
(113)That, indeed, the assassination in Burundi on 23 October 1993, of President Melchior NDADAYE, the first Hutu president democratically elected on 1 June 1993, had led to the massacre of many Tutsis and, on the pretext of repressing these killings, to the further killings of many Hutus by the Burundian [Tutsi-led] Army; and
(114)That in the face of these killings in Burundi, the opposition parties already aligned with the R.P.F. found themselves even more shredded and subjects of new internal divisions, which effectively deprived the R.P.F. of any possibility of obtaining the majority it needed in the upcoming elections called for by the Arusha Accords; and
(115)That this analysis of the situation by the R.P.F. was confirmed by Mr. Bernard DEBRE, former [French] Minister of Cooperation, who in his deposition of 2 June 1998, before the [French] Parliamentary Commission, noted that the intentions confided to him by the representatives of the R.P.F. meeting in Kigali at the end of January 1994 were that ‘we can not wait for the elections, we’re going to lose them, we will take power before [the elections], and spill blood if we must’; and
(116)That the American authorities must also have been aware of this situation and of the intentions of the R.P.F.; and
(117)That at the time of his testimony before the French Investigative Commission on 7 July 1998, Mr Hermann COHEN, advisor on African affairs to the U.S. Secretary of State from April 1989 to April 1993, noted that the Rwandan Prime Minister and the Minister for Foreign Affairs, both of whom were from opposition parties, had told him in a meeting in Kigali on 10 and 11 May 1992, that they ‘were opposed to prospective negotiations with the R.P.F. because they were frightened’; and
(118)That he later mentioned that the U.S. had sent an observer to the Arusha negotiations and that the C.I.A. had done an analysis at the end of 1992 according to which it would be impossible to apply these accords; and
(119)That this analysis by the C.I.A., cited by Mr Hermann COHEN, was confirmed by a telegram from the C.I.A. which clarified the strategy being pursued by the R.P.F., which was – according to a C.I.A. informant who was an important functionary within the R.P.F. – to continue to take part in the formal negotiations to better conceal the activities of the Rwandan Patriotic Army, charged with seizing power by force of arms; and
(120)Considering that the first evidence implicating the R.P.F. in the attack of 6 April 1994 was received in February 1997 by U.N. investigators posted to Kigali, working with the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (I.C.T.R.) and acting under the authority of its chief Prosecutor, Madame Louise ARBOUR; and
(121)That the existence of this evidentiary trail explored by the I.C.T.R. was disclosed on 1 March 2000 in the Canadian English-language newspaper the ‘National Post’, citing a report from 1 August 1997 compiled by I.C.T.R. investigators which stated that a unit of the R.P.F. called the ‘Network’ had participated in the assassination of President HABYARIMANA; and
(122)That on 27 March 2000, the judicial services of the U.N. admitted the existence of this report and that they had sent it to Madame la Presidente of the I.C.T.R. in ARUSHA; and
(123)That an international rogatory letter was delivered on 23 May 2000 to the authorities of the I.C.T.R. requesting a copy of this report and of the ‘internal memorandum’ that was sent to Madame Louise ARBOUR; and
(124)That though Madame Navanethem PILAY, President of the Tribunal, let it be known in response to this judicial inquiry that she, in fact, was in possession of the document in question, she said it was impossible for her to respond favorably to the French request; and
(125)That, nonetheless, on 31 August 2000, the Court of Paris, on the instructions of the Minister of Justice, passed on a copy of said report, which was attached to the current with a view toward its future use; and
(126)That the documents thus sent by the Court of Paris were authenticated by Mr Michael HOURIGAN, former Australian prosecutor and a lawyer in Atlanta, Georgia (U.S.) at the time of his testimony in Paris on 29 December 2000; and
(127)That he testified he had been in charge, from April 1996 to May 1997, of a group of U.N. investigators sent by the I.C.T.R. to KIGALI and designated the ‘National Team’ while working with the Investigative Section on Internal Affairs of the U.N. in New York from July 1997 to January 1998; and
(128)That with regard to his mission for the I.C.T.R., Michael HOURIGAN stated that the investigators on his team, empowered by their superiors to investigate the attack, considered themselves to be entering a field of inquiry within the authority of the Tribunal, never found any tangible evidence implicating the Hutu extremists, but, on the contrary, were drawn to an evidentiary trail leading directly to the R.P.F.; and
(129)That he stated in this regard that one of the investigators on his team was contacted by a high official of the R.P.A. and told that Paul KAGAME and others in the leadership of the R.P.A. were involved in the attack and that another informant had been recruited to corroborate this information and who could identify one of the two ‘shooters’, a member of the R.P.A.; and
(130)That, he added, he had had personal contact at that time with a former gendarme of the R.P.A. who claimed to have been a member of cell controlled by Paul KAGAME and called the ‘Network’, which was responsible for murders and violent exactions; and
(131)That, still according to Michael HOURIGAN, the handling of these sources with an eye toward keeping them ready to testify was provisionally put on hold while waiting for a response from the authorities at the Tribunal as to their protection and because of certain security considerations, the investigators having been openly threatened by leaders of the R.P.F. who didn’t accept the methods and strategy of the Tribunal; and
(132)That Michael HOURIGAN furthermore stated that he had obtained from his superiors the authorization to maintain his contacts with these informants and to pursue the investigation with the stated purpose of directly informing Madame Louise ARBOUR at The Hague; and
(133)That on a secure telephone line from the U.S. Embassy in Kigali, he had, on or about 7 March 1997, a conversation with Madame Louise ARBOUR and that in the course of their exchange she told him that she had received, through other channels, intelligence that backed up his own and that at no time had she told him that the investigation into the attack was not within the authority of the I.C.T.R.; and
(134)That he also stated that after this conversation he met in Kigali with Michael HALL, a Security Officer with the U.N. who had been assigned a mission by the new Secretary General, Kofi ANNAN, to set up a system for the evaluation of threats against official of the U.N.; and
(135)That, according to Michael HOURIGAN, Michael HALL, who had met in New York with Madame Louise ARBOUR and was informed there of elements implicating Paul KAGAME and the R.P.F. in the attack, told him of the orders he had received from the Secretary General of the U.N. to instruct HOURIGAN to rush to The Hague to meet with Madame ARBOUR and to see to it that he leave no traces in KIGALI of any reports concerning the attack; and
(136)That twenty-four hours before his departure, he recorded on a computer diskette ‘an internal memorandum’ containing all the information in his possession and sent it to Michael HALL in order to be able to get through all the various security checks at the KIGALI airport, because though I.C.T.R. investigators held diplomatic passports they were from time to time searched by officials of Rwandan immigration; and
(137)That Michael HOURIGAN added that after he got to The Hague some days later, Madame ARBOUR, without explanation and contrary to the instructions she had given before, openly and firmly criticized him and the members of his group for conducting an investigation on this attack which, according to her, was not within the authority of the I.C.T.R. and that, because of his noncompliance with instructions, contact with the informants had been lost; and
(138)That these facts were also confirmed by a second U.N. investigator, Mr James LYONS; and
(139)That also heard as a witness in Paris, he stated he had been a director and special agent for the F.B.I., in charge of an anti-terrorist unit in New York, before assuming control of the investigative units for the I.C.T.R. under the supervision of Mr Alphonse BREAU and of Assistant Prosecutor Honoré REKATOMANANA; and
(140)That he confirmed that after the creation of ‘National Investigative Group’ in April 1996, it was admitted by Madame ARBOUR and Mr REKATOMANANA, according to the terms of article 4 of the I.C.T.R. statutes, the attack on the presidential plane was within the scope of their missions; and
(141)That concerning the facts related by Michael HOURIGAN, he complemented and confirmed them; and
(142)That thus, he declared that at the end of 1997, Michael HOURIGAN’s team had established relationships with three informants ‘close to the R.P.F. who had clearly indicated that the attack against the airplane of President HABYARIMANA was carried out by the R.P.F.’, specifying that two of the informants were introduced to them as members of the intelligence services that had worked for Paul KAGAME at the heart of a network charged with conducting secret operations and that, because of their positions, they had in their possession precise information on the attack; and
(143)That he added that the group of investigators had also received information according to which, on the night of 6 April 1994, an intercepted radio message from the R.P.F. announced that ‘the target has been hit’; and
(144)That, moreover, James LYONS corroborated other of Michael HOURIGAN’s statements on Madame Louise ARBOUR’s brutal change of attitude and the breaking off of contact with the informants; and
(145)Considering that Madame ARBOUR did not wish to be heard; and
(146)That concerning the internal memo titled ‘Secret Investigation of the National Team’, a copy was given to investigators by Michael HOURIGAN after his hearing; and
(147)That his findings corroborated his statements on the intelligence work done by his team of investigators, and in particular, the treatment of three sources that found the R.P.A. – through the ‘Network’ – to be responsible for the attack of 6 April 1994; and
(148)That it is equally pertinent to observe that even before the investigators came into possession of this intelligence, Belgian Professor Filip REYNTJENS was sent in November 1994 a letter written by Mr Sixbert MUSANGAMFURA, former chief of the ‘Central Intelligence Service’ (C.I.S.) of the Rwandan government put in place by the R.P.F.; the latter, in exile in Nairobi (Kenya), stated that after the R.P.F. took power in July 1994, his functions permitted him to conduct a discrete investigation that showed that contrary to what had been suggested, the Rwandan Armed Forces (R.A.F.) were not implicated in the attack, but that it had been perpetrated by the R.P.A.; that Sixbert MUSANGAMFURA added that because of the physical risks he ran as long as he was in exile in Africa, he asked Professor Filip REYNTJENS to not make public the information he had given him; and
(149)Considering that this search for information had to re-enforce the basic investigation initiated by the I.C.T.R; and
(150)That the statements gathered from former members of the R.P.F. or the R.P.A. living in exile after leaving the organization strengthened the implications of the organization in the attack on the presidential plane and permitted the identification of the principal actors; and
(151)Considering that Abdul RUZIBIZA, a former officer in the R.P.A., heard 3 July 2003, confirmed the existence of the ‘network commando’, of which he became a member in February 1993 and whose mission was to attack, kidnap and assassinate political personalities who disagreed with the R.P.F., and thereby lay the groundwork and infiltrate their agents in preparation for the renewal of the war; and
(152)That concerning the attack of 6 April 1994, he related that in February 1994 he was part of a unit that infiltrated Kigali and whose mission was the reconnaissance of the Masaka-Kanombe sector, specifically stating that his superior was Captain Hubert KAMUGISHA, directly connected to Captain Charles KARAMBA, an officer in the D.M.I. then stationed at the C.N.D. in Kigali, and that this group to which he belonged was composed of Sub-Lieutenant NGOMANZIZA and of Sergeants Jean Bosco NDAYISABA and Emmanuel RUZIGANA; and
(153)That according to Abdul RUZIBIZA, at the end of March 1994, he was informed by Sergeant Aloys RUYENZI, a top commander under the authority of Colonel James KABAREBE, that at a meeting held in Mulindi, at which General Paul KAGAME had also taken part, officers Faustin NYANWASA KAYUMBA, James KABAREBE, Jacob TUMWINE, Charles KARAMBA and Théoneste LIZINDE, were given orders to shoot down the airplane of President HABYARIMANA; and
(154)That he added that at the beginning of April, Captain Hubert KAMUGISHA had told the group charged with the surveillance of the Masaka-Kanombe sector to get ready because the order had been given to take action at the first opportunity; and
(155)That on 6 April he was a witness to the group made up of Jean Bosco NDAYISABA, Emmanuel RUZIGANA and NGOMANZIZA, receiving a radio message ordering them to go back to the house of Jean Marie HUNYANKINDI, a relative of Paul KAGAME, located in the Masaka-Kanombe sector; and
(156)That they immediately set about assuring the security of the team charged with firing the surface-to-air missiles at the approach of the plane, while the hit-team made up of Sub-Lieutenant Franck NZIZA, Corporal Eric HAKIZIMANA and Private Patiano NTAMBARA, charged principally with their immediate security, was driven from the ‘Conseil National pour le Développement’ C.N.D. to Masaka by Sergeant Didier MAZIMPAKA in a Toyota pick-up in which were hidden two missile-launchers; and
(157)That as to these missile-launchers, Abdul RUZIBIZA stated that while he was at the R.P.F. headquarters in Mulindi he learned that the SAMs, which had come from the Ugandan arsenal in the beginning of January 1994, had been introduced into the C.N.D. in Kigali hidden on board a Mercedes truck transporting firewood; and, he added, that he had heard talk about a training program in Uganda in January 1993 for R.P.A. personnel, which included enlisted men Eric HAKIZIMANA, Stevens TWAGIRA and Andrews NYAVUMBA, all members of the ‘Missiles Section’ under the command of Lt. Alphonse KAYUMBA and his adjutant Lt. Franck NZIZA; and
(158)That, in discussing the final stage of the operation, he went on to state that, knowing the approximate time of arrival of the President’s flight and identifying the Falcon 50 by its characteristic engine noise, Eric HAKIZIMANA fired the first missile, which missed the target, and that it was the second missile fired by Franck NZIZA that hit the plane and caused it to explode in flight; and he added that at the end of this operation the hit-team fled, leaving the two empty missile-launcher tubes behind; and
(159)That furthermore, Abdul RUZIBIZA learned that around 5:30 pm, Lt-Col. Charles KAYONGA received a call from Paul KAGAME alerting him to the return of the President’s plane and that he must not miss this operation, and that at the moment of the attack, Charles KAYONGA, who was posted on the top floor of the C.N.D., saw the plane explode; and
(160)That Paul KAGAME, informed of the success of the operation by Lt-Col. James KABAREBE, immediately ordered the R.P.A. units to move out; and
(161)That, still according to Abdul RUZIBIZA, an earlier plan to destroy the presidential Falcon 50 was projected for the evening before when the President was to return from Zaire, but that that operation had to be canceled due to a lack of information; and
(162)That another witness testifying before this hearing also confirmed the existence of the ‘network commando’ and its implication in the attack of 6 April 1994; and
(163)Considering that Emmanuel RUZIGANA, former Sergeant in the R.P.A., testifying 29 March 2004, stated that he was assigned in March 1994 to the ‘network commando’ created in 1993 by James KABAREBE, and that, undercover as a taxi driver, he directed a group of six soldiers commanded by Captain Hubert KAMUGISHA, who had informed him two weeks before the event of the plan to shoot down the President’s plane; and
(164)That he declared that on 2 April, after first reconnoitering the site himself a few days earlier, he drove Lt-Col. KAYONGA and Capt. Hubert KAMUGISHA in his taxi to a place in Masaka called ‘the farm’ so they, too, could reconnoiter the site chosen for the shoot-down; and
(165)That he further noted that on 6 April, when he was in Masaka with his group, he saw the arrival of a pick-up truck driven by Sgt. Didier MAZIMPAKA and with Sub-Lt. Franck NZIZA, Jean Bosco NDAYISABA, Eric HAKIZIMANA and Patiano NTAMBARA on board; and
(166)That, furthermore, he heard on the two-way radio at his post Lt. Charles KAYONGA announce to Franck NZIZA that the airplane which was about to arrive was, in fact, that of President HABYARIMANA and that he had to ‘do the job’, adding that after the attack, he would pick up the members of his group and get them back to the C.N.D.; and
(167)That RUZIGANA, who had not been in direct contact with the shooters, specified that later he learned that Franck NZIZA and also Eric HAKIZIMANA had shot down the plane; and
(168)That he further confirmed the statements of RUZIBIZA on the first attack planned for 5 April that had to be pushed back; and
(169)Considering that, furthermore, Aloys RUYENZI, mentioned by RUZIBIZA as another member of the ‘network commando’ and who, as such, attended a meeting held at the end of March 1994 in Mulindi in the presence of General Paul KAGAME in the course of which the order to shoot down the presidential plane was given, additionally confirms this testimony; and
(170)That testifying in Paris 25 March 2004, Aloys RUYENZI recounted how, as he was assigned to the immediate protection of Paul KAGAME, he found himself on 31 March 1994 in the meeting room of the headquarters at Mulindi where KAGAME was meeting with Officers James KABAREBE, Jacob TUMWINE, Charles KARAMBA, KAYUMBA NYAMWASA and Théoneste LIZINDE; that, according to his explanation, this meeting was for the purpose of planning the operational manner by which President HABYARIMANA would be eliminated; and
(171)That he specified that Paul KAGAME also said: ‘. . . as soon as President HABYARIMANA has left the meeting in ARUSHA and his plane is on its approach you fired on it, the war will not end unless President HABYARIMANA is dead.’; and
(172)That Aloys RUYENZI also stated he was present when two missiles were delivered to four soldiers who then armed them in a vehicle that was part of a convoy destined for the C.N.D. in Kigali and being escorted by UNAMIR; and
(173)That he added that aboard this vehicle were Sub-Lt. Franck NZIZA and Cpl. Eric HAKIZAMANA, who confided to him after the war that they had participated in the attack, Eric HAKIZAMANA firing the first missile that missed its target, while Franck NZIZA fired the missile that successfully brought down the plane; and
(174)That the testimony of RUYENZI jibed with those of Abdul RUZIBIZA and Emmanuel RUZIGANA and with the depositions of eye-witnesses to the attack, Belgian soldiers Mathieu GERLACHE and Pascal VOITURON of the UNAMIR, Jean-Luc HABYARIMANA and Jeanne HABYARIMANA, respectively, the son and sister of the President, as well as with the declarations of Belgian Colonel Luc MARCHAL and his adjutant, Lt.-Col. André LEROY, members of the ‘UNAMIR’, regarding the smuggling of arms by the R.P.F.; and
(175)That Luc MARCHAL, in his deposition of 7 March 1997 before the Belgian Parliamentary Commission, stated that he had always been convinced that the R.P.F. used the pretext of going out to gather firewood in order to cover their smuggling of arms; and
(176)That he went on to state in his testimony of 19 July 2002 in Brussels, that he was informed that elements of the R.P.F. secretly left their camp at the C.N.D. in the night and that the R.P.F. refused to allow member of the UNAMIR and the U.N. observers to take part in the loading of trucks which facilitated their smuggling of arms; and
(177)That this observation was shared by Lt-Col. André LEROY, who also testified before the Belgian Parliamentary Commission; and
(178)That furthermore, Sgt. Dimitri PAUWELS, a Belgian officer assigned to the UNAMIR, testifying in Brussels on 8 July 2002 before an international commission of inquiry, stated that a few days before the attack, while he was escorting a convoy of R.P.F. vehicles coming from Mulindi to the C.N.D. in Kigali, he noticed that several vehicles not initially with the convoy and carrying between 200 and 300 people, armed and in civilian clothes as well as in military uniforms, had slipped into the convoy; and
(179)That these facts reported by Belgian military personnel confirmed the statements of the former members of the R.P.A., witnesses to the transportation of the missiles from Mulindi to the C.N.D. in Kigali and the different testimonies obtained elsewhere concerning the constant re-enforcement of R.P.F. troops in Kigali with the aim of resuming hostilities against the Rwandan government forces after the attack; and
(180)Considering, furthermore, that the testimonies of two former R.P.A. personnel, both Tutsi Anglophones, assigned to the immediate protection of KAGAME, who were in Mulindi for the preparation of the attack, gave added confirmation to the previously cited statements of Abdul RUZIBIZA, Emmanuel RUZIGANA and Aloys RUYENZI about the implication of the R.P.F. and, primarily, its leader, Paul KAGAME, in this attack; and
(181)Considering that Innocent MARARA, who testified in Paris on 3 September 2001, after having fled Rwanda where he felt he was in danger, declared he had stayed at President Paul KAGAME’s residence, ‘Urugwiro’, from the time he rejoined the R.P.A. in 1991 until February 2001; and
(182)That he explained because of his being an ethnic Tutsi, born outside Rwanda and Anglophone, he was chosen in 1992 for Paul KAGAME’s personal guard unit and was stationed at the R.P.F. headquarters in Mulindi; and
(183)That he stated, because of his position, he witnessed at the headquarters in Mulindi three separate meetings during which the assassination of President HABYARIMANA was planned and then cancelled; and
(184)That at the time of the first of these three meetings, which took place a month after the Arusha Accords of 4