Genocide: Rwandan faces extradition from Denmark

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Mutangana said Rwanda sent a warrant for Twagirayezu to Denmark last year. (File)

Police in Denmark have in custody a 49-year-old man suspected of participating in the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

The man, whose name was not disclosed by the Danish prosecution, has been identified by sources as Wenceslas Twagirayezu, who lives in Smørum, a small town north of the capital Copenhagen.

He works for an IT company, according to the sources.

“We have a very serious case here. The 49-year-old man is suspected to have participated in massacres (of) more than a thousand people, according to the Rwandan authorities. It’s a very serious matter to send a Danish citizen to the courts in Rwanda.

“However, after a very thorough investigation it’s our view that there’s sufficient reason to extradite him,” reads part of a statement from the Danish prosecution.

Twagirayezu was naturalised as a Danish citizen in 2004, having arrived in the Nordic country in 2001.

Prosecutor-General Jean Bosco Mutangana said they had not been notified of the arrest but confirmed that his office sent an international arrest warrant for Twagirayezu to Denmark in June 2014.

“We wrote an indictment and arrest warrant to our colleagues in Denmark detailing atrocities committed by Twagirayezu and if indeed he has been arrested, then it would be a positive development,” said Mutangana.

It is said that Twagirayezu, who apparently runs an organisation in Denmark called Dutabarane Foundation, was a teacher at a school called Majambere Primary School in Busasamana Sector of the current Rubavu District.

According to Mutangana, the suspect was also the president of the extremist party, CDR, in Gacurabwenge Sector also in the current Rubavu District, and was a known militia leader in the area during the Genocide against the Tutsi. 

CDR was composed of the most virulent members of the extremist political outfits that played a role in the Genocide.

Precedence

According to legal analysts, Twagirayezu’s extradition to Rwanda is likely to be fast-tracked due to the precedence that was set in 2014, when the European country extradited Emmanuel Mbarushimana.

Mutangana, who prior to his appointment as prosecutor-general earlier this year headed the International Crimes Unit within prosecution, shares the same optimism.

“Denmark is a country with which we have good relations when it comes to bringing to book fugitives responsible for the Genocide against the Tutsi and we believe this will not be any different, if indeed it’s true,” said Mutangana.

Mbarushimana, who is accused of masterminding massacres in the present Gisagara District in Southern Province, is still on trial.

He was, during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi, an inspector of schools in then Muganza Commune.

More than 600 indicted Genocide suspects remain at large according to figures from prosecution and these indictments were issued in 32 countries.

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