EDITORIAL: Declassification not enough, arrest Genocide perpetrators

On Tuesday, France declassified documents related to the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi that claimed over a million Rwandans.

On Tuesday, France declassified documents related to the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi that claimed over a million Rwandans. 

The files, which Rwanda and the victims were denied access to for the past 21 years, will now be accessible to researchers and victims’ groups, according the French president’s office.

One wonders what took French authorities this long to open the documents to the public, especially the Rwandan government and victims of the heinous crimes committed by those they continue to shield from facing justice? Isn’t this act a little too late? And should Rwandans applaud France for this action?

If, on the French side, it is a change of heart, it should go all the way. In this case, France should arrest Genocide perpetrators, who are still walking freely in French cities as their victims cry for justice days on end.

The leaders of the day should denounce those accused of Genocide, apprehend and bring them to book. France is not alone; there are other Western capitals that continue to protect individuals who have been indicted for the crimes of Genocide. So, time to act is now; no need to wait for another, month or year to do what should have been done 21 years ago.

Those countries harbouring them can choose whether to be on the side of perpetrators of Genocide and impunity or with the victims and justice. Hopefully, this time round they will make the right decision, late as it may be.

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