Following completion of appropriate procedures under French law, notorious genocide fugitive, Félicien Kabuga, is expected to the transferred to the custody of the UN International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals, where he will stand trial.
The Mechanism Chief Prosecutor, Serge Brammertz, said earlier today that Kabuga was arrested in Paris by French authorities as the result of a joint investigation with the his Office.
“Kabuga’s arrest demonstrates that we can succeed when we have the international community’s support,” he said in a statement.
“This result is a tribute to the unwavering commitment of the United Nations Security Council, which established the Mechanism to continue the accountability process in Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia,” he said.
Rwanda National Public Prosecution Authority welcomed Kabuga’s arrest and and that, ” Rwanda will continue to collaborate with the UNIRMCT to ensure that justice is delivered.”
Government officials did not comment or respond to our queries.
Former Prosecutor General, Jean Bosco Mutangana, who has been a key figure in tracking and bringing to justice of many genocide fugitives, commented on twitter.
“Thanks to many partners and different law enforcement agencies that contributed to the arrest of genocide fugitive Kabuga Felicien. Time will come and remaining genocide fugitives will be brought to justice as well,” he said in a tweet.
UNIRMCT Chief Prosecutor said, “Our first thoughts must be with the victims and survivors of the [genocide against the Tutsi]. Advocating on their behalf is an immense professional honor for my entire Office.”
“The arrest of Félicien Kabuga today is a reminder that those responsible for genocide can be brought to account, even twenty-six years after their crimes,” he added.
The UNIRMCT was established by UN Security Council Resolution 1966 (2010) to complete the remaining work of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda and the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, which closed in 2015 and 2017, respectively.
The Mechanism has two branches, one in Arusha, Tanzania, and one in The Hague, Netherlands.
This is the court that will proceed with case.
Tom Ndahiro, a Rwandan scholar and researcher on the Genocide against the Tutsi, said earlier that, “Better late than never.”
“The arrest of 85 year old Felicien Kabuga by #IRMCT and #France is very good news–for justice lovers, #GenocideAgainstTutsi survivors and humanity. South Africa is challenged to arrest genocidaires who have a safe haven in their [country].”