Monday, August 13, 2012

Victoire Ingabire and the crisis in D.R. Congo

Rwandan political prisoner Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza, and
the Rwandan Diaspora protesting in Brussels for her release

In July 2010, Victoire Ingabire told Womens' International News Gathering Service that the warring that followed refugees from Rwanda into eastern Congo must be brought to an end with dialogue, not invasion:

"The stumbling block is the refugees issue. For the last 16 years or so, the current regime has attempted to settle this refugee problem through military invasion. It is this problem which poisoned the relation between Rwanda and Congo – DRC – and Uganda. And we have to resolve this problem, not militarily, but through dialogue." 

Is it any wonder she's been in Rwandan General Kagame's 1930 maximum security prison since October 2010?  Twelve years of UN investigations have proven that what Kagame and his Rwandan Patriotic Front party have described, since 1996, as a hunt for the perpetrators of the Rwanda Genocide, who fled to eastern Congo, has been very profitable for General Kagame, and for Uganda's General Museveni, and their elite collaborators, nationally and internationally.  In 2001, the first of the UN Panel of Experts on Illegal Minerals Trade in the Democratic Republic of the Congo reported that militias allied with both Rwanda and Uganda were smuggling minerals across Congo's eastern borders, and that Rwandan President Paul Kagame and Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni were, "on the verge of becoming the godfathers of illegal resource exploitation and ongoing conflict in the Democratic Republic of the Congo."  

Rwandan prosecutors asked that Victoire Ingabire be found guilty and sentenced to life in prison, but the verdict that was to be handed down on June 29th has been postponed to September 7th. 

On August 17th, Rwandans and Congolese will gather in the Hague to petition the International Criminal Court to indict Rwandan President Paul Kagame for violating arms embargoes and helping the M23 militia in Congo in violation of Security Council sanctions.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Ingabire is a hero. Her claims will finally gain the cause. And her torturers will pay.