PARIS/KAMPALA (1) – Rwandan genocide suspect Felicien Kabuga, who’s accused of funding militias that massacred about 800,000 individuals, was arrested on Saturday close to Paris after 26 years on the run, the French justice ministry mentioned.

The 84-year-old, who’s Rwanda’s most-wanted man and had a $5 million U.S. bounty on his head, was dwelling underneath a false identification in a flat in Asnieres-Sur-Seine, in line with the ministry.

French gendarmes arrested him at 0530 GMT on Saturday, the ministry mentioned.

Kabuga was indicted in 1997 on seven prison counts together with genocide, complicity in genocide and incitement to commit genocide, all in relation to the 1994 Rwanda genocide, in line with the UN-established Worldwide Residual Mechanism for Felony Tribunals (IRMCT).

Rwanda’s two foremost ethnic teams are the Hutus and Tutsis, who’ve traditionally had an antagonistic relationship and fought a civil battle in the early 1990s.

A Hutu businessman, Kabuga is accused of funding the militias that massacred some 800,000 Tutsis and their average Hutu allies over a span of 100 days in 1994.

“Since 1994, Felicien Kabuga, identified to have been the financier of Rwanda genocide, had with impunity stayed in Germany, Belgium, Congo-Kinshasa, Kenya, or Switzerland,”

the French ministry assertion mentioned.

His arrest paves the approach for the fugitive to come back earlier than the Paris Attraction Court docket and later be transferred to the custody of the worldwide court docket, which is predicated in the Hague, Netherlands and Arusha, Tanzania. He would then be introduced earlier than UN judges, an IRMCT spokesman mentioned.

Two different Rwandan genocide suspects, Augustin Bizimana and Protais Mpiranya, are nonetheless being pursued by worldwide justice.

“The arrest of Félicien Kabuga at this time is a reminder that these accountable for genocide may be delivered to account, even twenty-six years after their crimes,” the IRMCT’s Chief Prosecutor Serge Brammertz mentioned in an announcement.

He added the arrest was the results of cooperation between regulation enforcement businesses in France and different international locations together with the United States, Rwanda, Belgium, the United Kingdom, Germany, the Netherlands and others.

Rwanda’s justice minister, Johnston Busingye, advised 1 {that a} assertion on the arrest could be issued however didn’t specify when.

Kabuga, who managed a lot of Rwanda’s tea and low plantations and factories, was part-owner of Radio Tv Milles Collines which ran a radio station that fanned ethnic hatred in opposition to Rwanda’s Tutsis, advised Hutus the place Tutsis have been to be discovered and provided recommendation on how you can kill them.

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He’s accused of being a foremost financier of the genocide, paying for the militias that carried out the massacres.

His arrest “is a crucial step in the direction of justice for lots of of 1000’s of genocide victims…survivors can hope to see justice and suspects can not count on to flee accountability,” Mausi Segun, Africa director at Human Rights Watch, advised 1.

Reporting by Dominique Vidalon; Extra reporting by Katharine Houreld and George Obulutsa in Nairobi and Toby Sterling in Amsterdam; Modifying by Frances Kerry and Ros Russell