An estimated 800,000 people died in Rwanda in the spring of 1994. The massacre was carried out by extremist nationalists from the majority Hutu people. Most of the victims belonged to the Tutsi minority, but the Hutus, who were also seen as companions, were murdered.
Rwanda has accused France of protecting war criminals and establishing the then erstwhile Hutu regime.
Commission Report, Handed over to French President Emmanuel Macron, blamed then French President François Mitterand for pursuing a “failed” policy towards Rwanda, writes the British BBC. Mutterrand had close ties with former Rwandan President Juvenal Habarimana.
When his plane was shot down before landing in the capital Kigali on 6 April 1994, Habarimana was killed. The shooting is considered the trigger for the massacre.
The commission’s conclusion stated, among other things, that “France had long been engaged in a regime that promoted racist genocides”, and that France was “blind to the most radical elements of the regime preparing for genocide.” Remained “, reports AFP agency.
Criticism also included the fact that the French authorities under Mitterrand’s regime adopted a “binary approach”, in which Habarimana was seen as a “Hutu ally” against the Tutsari-made “enemy” backed by the neighboring country of Uganda. AFP writes that France is also accused of offering to intervene in Rwanda.
Macron, who gave The commission – led by historian Vincent Duclert – welcomed the commission to investigate France’s possible role in the massacre.
Macron’s office wrote in a statement to AFP, “We hope that the report can lead to the development of our relationship with Rwanda (and this time the process of resuming friendly relations is irreversible.”
Kigali has also welcomed the findings and described the report as “a general view of France’s role in the massacre” in a statement.
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