President Emmanuel Macron has finally succumbed to President Paul Kagame’s impunity, and the long expected mis-carriage of justice in France has at last come, once again a betrayal of Rwandans by successive French regimes. French judges Jean-Marc Herbaut and Nathalie Poux have, after almost twenty years of investigations and extensive evidence gathered by Judges Jean-Louis Bruguiere and Marc Trevidic, come to a politically motivated conclusion to close the investigation in the shooting down of the plane on April 6, 1994, killing all of the following on board:
1) Président Juvénal HABYARIMANA; 2) Major General Déogratias NSABIMANA; 3) Ambassador Juvénal RENZAHO; 4) Colonel Elie SAGATWA; 5) Dr. Emmanuel AKINGENEYE; 6) Major Thaddée BAGARAGAZA.
Burundi Delegation :
2) Président Cyprien NTATYAMIRA
3) Secrétary Bernard CIZA
4) Minister Cyriaque SIMBIZI.
French Aircraft Crew :
5) Colonel Jean-Pierre MINABERRY
6) Major Jack HÉRAUD
7) Sergeant-Major Jean-Marie PERRINE
There is plenty of credible evidence that confirms that then RPF’s Major General Paul Kagame and Tutsi military and intelligence officers under his command assassinated all the above who perished in the terrorist act. The persistent refusal by President Kagame and his fellow Tutsi officers in the military and intelligence to be investigated by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda until its closure, and the deliberate protection of the Kigali regime from accountability by the US and UK governments since 1994, leave an extensive credibility deficit in the international justice system. The French judges have obviously chosen to ignore the abundant evidence, and to acquiesce to President Macron’s convenient political and geo-strategic mis-calculations.
In rewarding President Kagame with innocence in a landmark assassination that triggered the genocide of Tutsi and Hutu, France has squandered the lessons it should have learned in its imperial past in Indo-China, Algeria, and Rwanda in the 1990s.
France’s alliance with the MRND regime in the 1990s was a strategic fiasco of enormous proportions, leading to genocide against Tutsi and the killing of thousands of Hutus opposed to the Hutu regime. In a dangerous twist of 21st Century history, France has now ignored the demands of justice to align itself with the RPF regime which has a public record of terrorism; assassinations; tyrannical rule; war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide against Hutu in Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo; and the killing of millions of Congolese people.
President Macron has now to be reminded in categorical terms, that while he is entitled to make decisions related to France, history does not allow him to decide unilaterally on matters related to Rwanda’s painful past, present, and future accountability in its quest for unity and healing. That duty and obligation belongs primarily to the Rwandan people, and secondarily to the international community, which includes France. At the very least, France should do no harm. It has, instead, chosen to harm Rwandans.
President Macron has betrayed French citizens, and each and every family whose loved one perished in the 1994 assassination. He has betrayed all Rwandans and Burundians whose leaders were assassinated by President Kagame and his band of assassins. He has betrayed Africans who still remember the racism, greed, violence and inhumanity that has characterized Western imperialism which France was part and parcel of.
As it has happened often, there will be a day of historical reckoning. When, not if, that happens, it will be permanently recorded that France was wrong again, as in Indo-China and Algeria.
On our part, it is the duty of all Rwandans, Burundians, Congolese, Africans, like-minded human beings in France and the rest of the world to resist this Macron-Kagame unholy pact which perpetuates the endless cycle of impunity and violent conflict in the Great Lakes region.
We make a life-long pledge to each and every family whose loved one was lost in the terrorist attack, and indeed to every victim from successive criminal regimes in Rwanda, that we will together struggle to uproot once and for all the culture of impunity in Rwanda.
Dr. Theogene Rudasingwa
ISHAKWE-Rwanda Freedom Movement
25th December, 2018