As Rwanda’s requests to have genocide fugitives extradited gains momentum, the Prosecutor General, Martin Ngoga, has disclosed that some organisations such as Human Rights Watch (HRW) are out to frustrate the process.
European countries including Norway, Sweden and Netherlands are processing extradition requests of Genocide fugitives, however, organisations such as HRW, Amnesty International and the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI) are challenging the decision on grounds that the extradited persons would not receive a fair trial.
Ngoga, yesterday, pointed out that attempts by the watchdogs to block this groundbreaking decision will be tantamount to preventing justice taking its course.
“Records are such that these organisations are always ready and opportunely present to oppose every initiative that would bring back to Rwanda genocide fugitives,” Ngoga said.
“From London to Arusha, organisations like Human Rights Watch are always there. And they have indeed succeeded in shielding these suspects from facing Justice”.
Arusha is the headquarters of the UN-backed International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.
Ngoga said that it was unfortunate that the NGOs are still out to protect the fugitives.
“The irony about it is that they do not push in equal measure for prosecutions of these suspects in their own systems that they consider just and not ‘hopeless’ as they consider our own to be,” Ngoga said.
“Once these organisations succeed to block extraditions to Rwanda, they retreat in comfort and enjoy the status quo, one of impunity. We have not seen them appear amicus curiae to push for prosecutions abroad.
“The way I see the attitude of NGOs like Human Rights Watch, is they are being instrumental in creating the impunity gap whose beneficiaries are the fugitives, Ngoga elaborated.
“I wish they were opposed to extradition to Rwanda and at the same time opposed to and taking concrete actions against the presence of Genocide fugitives in their own compounds”.