Denmark extradites Rwandan genocide fugitive for home trial

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Wenceslas Twagirayezu

By New Times

At least 24 years later, Wenceslas Twagirayezu is back in Rwanda to face his genocide past after being extradited on Tuesday by Denmark.

Mwasa Danish authorities sent the Genocide fugitive to Kigali to face trial.

Twagirayezu, 50, has been in custody since May last year and is accused of Genocide, extermination and murder as crimes against humanity.

Prosecution charges that the suspect participated in the mass killing and extermination of Tutsi, where together with others attacked various places of former Rwerere Commune in the current Rubavu District, killing thousands.

Among others, he commanded attacks on Busasamana Catholic Parish where more than 3,000 Tutsi had sought refuge and over 1,000 were murdered here, according to prosecution.

Twagirayezu, who witness accounts indicate openly carried a gun during the Genocide, is also being pinned on killings at Mudende University where more 1,000 Tutsi civilians had sought refuge and others at the Institut Saint Fidele where teachers and students were forced to board a bus and transferred to Nyundo where they were killed.

“The National Public Prosecution Authority of Rwanda is prepared and ready to bring to Justice Twagirayezu Wenceslas before the specialized International Crimes Chamber of the High Court and guarantee that human rights in criminal proceedings will be fully observed in view of a fair trial,” National Public Prosecution Authority (NPPA) said in a statement.

Prosecution also thanked the judicial authorities of Denmark and other relevant authorities for the facilitation of this extradition.

This is the second Rwandan to be extradited from the Nordic country; the first one being Emmanuel Mbarushimana, who was extradited in 2014.

Twagirayezu arrived in Denmark in 2001. It is said that Twagirayezu, who has been running an organisation in Denmark known as Dutabarane Foundation, was once a teacher at Majambere Primary School in Busasamana Sector of the present Rubavu District.

He was well known in the former communes of Rubavu, Mutura and Rwerere in the current Western Province.

According to prosecution, the suspect was the president of the extremist party, CDR, in the former Gacurabwenge Sector in the current Rubavu District, and was a known militia leader in the area during the Genocide against the Tutsi.

CDR was composed of the most virulent members of the extremist political outfits that played a major role in the Genocide.

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