Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Hirsch Ballin's Timing

Radio Netherlands WorldWide asked Hirsch Ballin , Dutch Minister of Justice, after his return to the Netherlands: 
"You were holding talks in Rwanda on an extradition treaty and suddenly a Rwandan genocide suspect was arrested in the south of the Netherlands. Was that just a coincidence?"
Hirsch Ballin answers:
"That arrest was not the result of my visit to Kigali. Our policy has been in place since 2008. We want people who come to the Netherlands with the intention of staying here – and who are suspected of crimes against humanity or against international law – to be brought to trial here, before an international tribunal or in the country where the crimes were allegedly committed."
Obviously the arrest was not the result of his vist. The real question is however, why did the arrest occur DURING the visit, and why was the visit planned BEFORE the August elections in Rwanda.

Hirsch Ballin   (pathetic) statements concerning the "democratic process" in Rwanda confirm my observations earlier today:
  • "Firstly, I’d like to say that the Rwandan government was democratically chosen and is legitimate."
  • "We anticipate no problems with the country’s democratic process."
  • "we’ll continue to work with the democratically elected government. "
On Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza:

You will extradite future suspects despite the case of Victoire Ingabire? (RNWW)

Hirsch Ballin:
"The case you’re referring to has nothing to do with extradition. It concerns someone who travelled to Rwanda herself. It’s not my place to comment on the case. We intend to carry on working towards a treaty because of the exceptional co-operation in the field of justice between our two countries."
Referring to her as "a case", as if she doesn't have family living in the Netherlands that live in fear every day. As if Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza has not been part of Dutch society for 17 years.

His claims that "the case has nothing to do with extradition" is, in the context of Erlinder's and Ingabire's treatment in Rwanda, premature and a clear threat to Rwandan immigrants living in the Netherlands. It's a statement that potentially influences decisions by Dutch judges in extradition cases.When he said "It’s not my place to comment on the case" he in fact just realized he had said too much and allready had commented on these potential "extradition cases". The minister of Justicle knows he has to refrain from commenting on ongoing jucidial extradition procedings against Rwandans accused of genocide.

His lack of compassion with Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza and his eager comments concerning the relationship between "the case" and "extradition cases" reveals bias, deep hatred and contempt for this former "asylumseeker" who thinks she can run for President in Rwanda. An illustration of the lack of respect for immigrants displayed in Dutch society in general throughout the last decade. It's symptomatic of the typical Dutch "no we can't mentality", a society divided in "classes". Suddenly I understand why Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza wanted to return.

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