Rwanda. According to
CountryAAH, the French counterpart to the Migration Court in
February rejected an asylum application from Agathe
Habyarimana, widow of Rwanda's former president Juvénal
Habyarimana. The reason for the rejection was that she may
have been responsible for genocide, which the Rwandan
government claimed without hearing since she was given
protection in France in 1994. An organization for survivors
of the genocide filed a lawsuit against her in a French
court. Rwanda requested her extradition and facilitated the
possibility of it by abolishing the death penalty in July.
About 800 people had their death sentences converted to life
The UN-backed War Criminal Court (ICTR) in Arusha,
Tanzania, which needs to be relieved, submitted a case to
another country for the first time in April. Michel
Bagaragaza, former head of the national tea industry, will
be investigated in the Netherlands. ICTR also requested to
file a case with Rwanda, despite Amnesty International
warning of flaws in the Rwandan legal system.
Two genocide suspects who had been wanted by ICTR were
arrested in France in July but were released on orders by a
court on the grounds that the arrest warrant was incorrectly
filled. However, a third Rwandan arrested in France was
considered to be extradited to ICTR.
In Belgium, a Rwandan former major was sentenced to 20
years in prison for the murder of ten Belgian UN soldiers at
the beginning of the genocide. However, he was acquitted of
also assassinating Prime Minister Agathe Uwilingiyimana. The
murders of the UN soldiers caused the UN to greatly reduce
its strength in Rwanda, and Belgian Prime Minister Guy
Verhofstadt admitted during the trial that thousands of
lives could have been spared if the UN troops had stayed.
Former President Pasteur Bizimungu was released from
prison after serving just under three years of a 15-year
sentence. He was convicted of racial incitement,
embezzlement and conspiracy with criminals.
Together with Burundi and Congo (Kinshasa), Rwanda
decided to revive cooperation in the Economic Community of
the Greater Sealands (CEPGL), which has been down for 13
years, and in June it was announced that Rwanda and Burundi
will become members of the East Africa Community. In
November, an agreement was signed with Congo (Kinshasa) on
joint work to stop the ravages of irregular militias in
neighboring eastern provinces.