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News > Rwanda

Businessman Accused of Rwandan Genocide Arrested After 26 Years

  • Rwandan businessman Felicien Kabuga.

    Rwandan businessman Felicien Kabuga. | Photo: Twitter/ @Nzioka42K

Published 16 May 2020

Felicien Kabuga financed the massacre of 800,000 members of the Tutsi community in 1994.

The International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals (IRMCT) reported that Felicien Kabuga, one of the most wanted fugitives from the 1994 Rwandan genocide, was arrested in Paris on Saturday and is expected to be transferred to the Netherlands, where he will appear before the International Court of Justice in The Hague.


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Kabuga played a key role in financing the massacres of hundreds of thousands of people committed against the Tutsi population of Rwanda in 1994, after which he fled to Switzerland, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Kenya.

From this country, the 84-year-old businessman imported tens of thousands of the machetes that were used in crimes. In 1997, he was charged with seven counts of genocide, complicity in genocide, direct and public incitement to commit genocide, and attempted genocide.

The arrest warrant was issued by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), created by the United Nations Security Council (UNSC).

"The arrest of Felicien Kabuga today is a reminder that those responsible for genocide can be brought to account, even 26 years after their crimes," the Hague’s Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals (MICT) Chief Prosecutor Serge Brammertz said.​​​​​​​

"Our first thoughts should be with the victims and survivors of the Rwandan genocide. Exercising on their behalf is an immense professional honor for my entire office," he added.

According to this international tribunal, the French police arrested him in a "sophisticated and coordinated operation with simultaneous searches in various places".

Brammertz appreciated the "essential contribution" of Europol, Interpol, and the public prosecutors of Rwanda, Belgium, the United Kingdom, Germany, the Netherlands, Austria, Luxembourg, Switzerland, and the U.S.

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