France Orders Trial Of Rwandan Doctor, Eugene Rwamucyo, Over 1994 Genocide

A Rwanda doctor, Eugene Rwamucyo, is set to go on trial in France on charges of genocide and crimes against humanity.

Rwamucyo is believed to be one of the masterminds of the genocide against the Tutsi in southern Rwanda in 1994.

In 2010, a French court blocked his extradition to Rwanda, where he has already been tried in absentia and sentenced to life in prison.

Now, French judges have ordered that the 61-year-old, who lives in Belgium, be put on trial over allegations of taking part in atrocities in Butare in southern Rwanda during the 1994 genocide.

The doctor’s lawyer said that his client rejected the allegations.

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Dr Rwamucyo is expected to appeal against the decision, which would delay the trial for a further year.

Around 800,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus died in ethnic killings carried out by extremist Hutus.

Rwamucyo, a doctor at Maubeuge hospital (North) in France, was suspended in October 2009 when the management of the establishment learned that he was the subject of an international arrest warrant issued by the Rwandan government.

He was later fired.

Rwamucyo was finally arrested in May 2010 in Sannois (Paris region) when he had just attended the funeral of another Rwandan, Jean-Bosco Barayagwiza, co-founder of Radio and television free of the Thousand Collines, the extremist anti-Tutsi radio station. The Versailles Court of Appeal, however, opposed his extradition in September 2010, ordering his release.

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He was first indicted in 2013 for “participation in an agreement to commit the crime of genocide”, then in 2018 for “genocide” and “crimes against humanity”, and placed under judicial control, with ban on leaving the Schengen area.

According to reports, France is home to some wanted Rwandans accused playing active role in the genocide. They included Agathe Kanziga, widow of former President Juvenal Habyarimana, Manasse Bigwenzare, a former judge, and Sosthene Munyemana, nicknamed “the butcher of Tumba” for atrocities he was involved in southern Rwanda.

There is also Father Wenceslas Munyeshyaka, a Catholic priest accused of having a direct hand in killings in parts of Kigali.

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