Evidence links Ingabire, Rusesabagina, with terrorist groups

KIGALI - As the trial in the case involving Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza and her co-accused takes root, new evidence by prosecution alleges that Ingabire and Paul Rusesabagina, a Rwandan living in the US, were involved in the formation of terrorist groups to destabilise the country.
Victoire Ingabire who is alleged to have connived in plans to set up a terrorist group.The New Times/ File
Victoire Ingabire who is alleged to have connived in plans to set up a terrorist group.The New Times/ File

KIGALI - As the trial in the case involving Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza and her co-accused takes root, new evidence by prosecution alleges that Ingabire and Paul Rusesabagina, a Rwandan living in the US, were involved in the formation of terrorist groups to destabilise the country.

The evidence, which was presented to the High Court, yesterday, indicates  that the duo was allegedly in constant contact with senior FDLR officers persuading them to break away and form armed groups affiliated to their political parties.

FDLR, a militia group based in the DRC, is made up mainly of perpetrators of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

Ingabire’s co-accused are; Lt. Colonel Tharcisse Nditurende, Lt. Colonel Noel Hitiyaremye, Capt. Jean Marie Vianney Karuta and Major Vital Uwumuremyi.

The four, who were formerly in the FDLR ranks, have already pleaded guilty and provided more information concerning the dealings with the politicians.

Reading the evidence before the court, prosecutor Bonaventure Ruberwa said that Ingabire and Rusesabagina, on several occasions, sent money to Lt. Col. Nditurende, Lt. Col. Hitiyaremye, in Congo and Burundi.

“We have statements from the accused and documents attesting to the working relationship between the officers and the two politicians aimed at terrorising the country,” Ruberwa said.

He explained that Ingabire got in contact with Nditurende, who was heading a battalion in FDLR in 2008, and asked him to break away and form an armed wing called Coalition des Forces Democratique (CDF) that was affiliated to her party, FDU-Inkingi.

According to the evidence acquired from Nditurende, he later met Ingabire in Kinshasa, DRC and in Congo Brazzaville where they held talks on how to hold subversive activities on the Rwandan territory to which she pledged support.

Meanwhile, prosecution alleged that Rusesabagina also kept in contact with Hitiyaremye, indicating that there is evidence of constant communication and money transactions between the two.

“Rusesabagina sent money to Hitiyaremye many times in Congo and in Burundi with the aim of establishing an armed wing for his PDR-Ihumure party,” Ruberwa said.

Hitiyaremye and Nditurende were later arrested in Burundi in September 2009 where they had allegedly gone to meet with the Burundian Intelligence Chief to solicit support to attack Rwanda.

Ingabire and her co-accused are charged with fueling insecurity and ethnic divisions, an accusation she denies.

The trial continues today.

Ends

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