Afraid, or embarrassed on behalf of France?

Should the publicising of the report detailing the role of France in the 1994 Rwanda Genocide wait for the implicated country to make progress towards restoration of good relations with Rwanda?

Should the publicising of the report detailing the role of France in the 1994 Rwanda Genocide wait for the implicated country to make progress towards restoration of good relations with Rwanda?

Should the decision to use the report as basis in any legal action against France put into consideration the difference in military and economic power and the resultant global influence between France and Rwanda?

That sounds like the suggestion that the demolition of slums in the City of Kigali should wait for the end of parliamentary or any other elections.

At the launch of the report at the Ministry of Justice yesterday, one person from among the members of the public present expressed the fear that the move could jeopardise the hope of ever being friends with France again.

Another one thought that by taking on muscular France in such a manner, Rwanda was overestimating its ability to stand the consequences.

A few things here can be put into perspective. Considering that the report brings out, like never before, glaring evidence pinning France, the document has potential to deal a severe blow to any moral uprightness left of France.

On the other hand, Rwanda will most likely draw lots of energy from the development, given the enrichment to its position as the offended party derived from the comprehensively compiled document.

Foreign Affairs minister, also present at the launch, made a pertinent emphasis. She reminded the world that mending of fences or forgiveness must never sideline the truth.

In other words, for any meaningful reconciliation to take place in a sustainable way, truth, even where it may be as ugly as France’s role in the Genocide, has to be the foundation. In this particular case the end does not justify the means.

It is the truth standing out in the report that the rest of the world is being called upon to take seriously, after any re-examination if they want.

This is because the crimes which France is being asked to account for were not committed against Rwandans alone but humanity as a whole.

African leaders have rightly been accused by the West of siding, or at best not condemning Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe despite his despicable leadership. Now observers have a chance to see if the West is any different. 

Ends

 

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