Paul Rusesabagina, who is facing 13 counts at a Rwanda court, has said he was tricked into Rwanda.
Rusesabagina, who was depicted in a Hollywood movie – ‘Hotel Rwanda’ – as a hero using his connections to save Tutsis during the Rwanda genocide of the 1990s, is facing 13 charges bordering on terrorism, complicity in murder and forming or joining an irregular armed group.
Speaking in an interview on Friday, the 66-year-old said he believed he was flying to Burundi at the invitation of a pastor but was instead lured to Rwanda and arrested on terrorism charges.
Rusesabagina, a prominent critic of President Paul Kagame, had been living in exile for over a decade. He accused Kagame of stifling political opposition.
The former hotel manager suddenly appeared in custody in Rwanda earlier this month, prompting accusations from his family that he had been kidnapped.
However, he said that he voluntarily boarded a private plane in Dubai that he believed was bound for Bujumbura, Burundi, where he had planned to speak to churches at the invitation of a local pastor.
Instead, he landed in Kigali, where he now faces 13 charges, including terrorism, complicity in murder and forming or joining an irregular armed group.
A spokesman for the prosecution on Wednesday said Rusesabagina faces a possible life sentence.
On Thursday, he was denied bail and will stay in jail for 30 days as the prosecution ends its investigations.
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