Idelphonse Nizeyimana arrested in Kampala

idelphonse nizeyimana

Idelphonse Nizeyimana, one of the most wanted suspects from the 1994 Rwanda genocide thought to be behind the killing of Queen Rosalie Gicanda, was arrested this morning in Kampala, Uganda. The BBC reports he was travelling under a false passport from the Democratic Republic of Congo on his way to Kenya when he was picked up,

About 800,000 ethnic Tutsis and moderate Hutus were killed by Hutu militias during 100 days in 1994.

The Rwandan war crimes tribunal in Tanzania described Mr Nizeyimana as one of their highest targets.

The BBC’s Will Ross, in Nairobi, says Mr Nizeyimana was detained in the Ugandan capital carrying false identity documents. He had entered the country from DR Congo and was heading for Nairobi, our correspondent says.

He was head of intelligence and military operations during the genocide and is accused of setting up special military units who helped carry out the genocide.

One of these units is believed to have killed Queen Rosalie Gicanda, widow of King Mutara III. link

Update: Nizeyimana was reportedly extradited soon after he was caught and was on a UN chartered plane to the ICTR in Tanzania when the story broke. The New York Times has a little more.

Update from Sky News:

Update from Rwanda News Agency:

The much publicized arrest of Genocide suspects Ildephonse Nizeyimana in Uganda remains shrouded in mystery as sources tell RNA that one of the most wanted men simply handed himself to the authorities.

The authorities in Uganda claim they collaborated with Interpol to arrest Nizeyimana in a small hotel on the outskirts of Kampala. However, they have not revealed the exact hotel. Ugandan officials also said he had been using false documents to travel from the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) to Kenya or Tanzania.

Sources have intimated to RNA that investigators of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda in Arusha, Tanzania – to where he was supposedly extradited Tuesday afternoon, could have worked out with Nizeyimana so he could hand himself over for a negotiated prosecution…

…”We got him. He was in a hotel and our intelligence located him. Through Interpol the police was able to identify him (and check) that he was the one on the wanted list,” Ugandan police spokeswoman Judith Nabakooba said. link (registration required)

Update 8 October: The Daily Monitor in Uganda is happy with the result of the arrest,

The Kampala arrest should serve as a key signal that Uganda will not provide a safe haven for fugitives running away from justice and particularly those who participated or sponsored the genocide in Rwanda. link

The Monitor also offers its account of how Nizeyimana was arrested in Kampala,

On arrival, the [Interpol] team requested for an operative to work with them in the operation to arrest the man who allegedly participated in the killing of many ethnic Tutsis – including a much-revered queen, Rosalie Gicanda, the widow of King Mutara III.

On Saturday, the combined team of Interpol operatives had a meeting with a senior detective attached to Interpol, Uganda.

The investigative officer, who has requested to remain anonymous because of the sensitivity of the matter, was appointed head of the operation to arrest the former Intelligence and military operations commander, who is accused of setting special military units to carry out genocide.

Mr Nizeyimana arrived at Exotic Inn Hotel on Musajja Alumbwa Road in Rubaga Division, Kampala, which Ms Nabakooba said has been used by criminals from DR Congo, Rwanda and Tanzania.

Ms Nabakooba said after he was arrested, Mr Nizeyimana was taken to Jinja Road Police Station where he spent a night. He was flown to the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda in Arusha, Tanzania, yesterday in a UN chartered plane. link

Photo taken from Wikipedia

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