By David Himbara
When General Paul Kagame kidnapped and imprisoned Paul Rusesabagina, the Rwandan strongman boasted that it was “a flawless operation.” Kagame’s boasting is based on the fact that he is used to getting away with every outrageous human rights atrocity without worrying about the consequences. Not this time. Kagame underestimated the seriousness of kidnapping an American permanent resident which Rusesabagina holds. The American authorities applied slow but steady pressure on the regime. The US Semafor news website Semafor which regularly interacts with Kagame, is reporting that Rusesabagina will be released from Kagame’s dungeons as early Saturday, March 25, 2023.
So, how will the Rwandan strongman save face for this rare embarrassing capitulation? According to Semafor, Rusesabagina had to request “a pardon” from the Rwandan strongman. In the pardon request, Rusesabagina expresses “regret for any connection” between his political activism and violent armed groups. Further, Rusesabagina says in the pardon request that he regrets for “not taking more care to ensure that members” of his opposition coalition “fully adhered to the principles of non-violence in which I fully and deeply believe.” Stay tuned.