French Judges Release Report on the Plane Crash Used as a Pretext to Start Genocide in Rwanda

Jan 10, 2012, 12:22 ET from The Government of Rwanda

KIGALI, Rwanda, January 10, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --

The Government of Rwanda today welcomed the report of the experts appointed by French Judges Marc Trévidic and Nathalie Poux that identified Kanombe Military Barracks as the launch site of the missile that brought down the plane carrying former President Juvenal Habyarimana on 6 April 1994.

The plane was shot down as it prepared to land at Kigali International Airport, bringing back then President Habyarimana from Peace Talks in Arusha. The crash served as an excuse for key perpetrators to execute a meticulously planned genocide against the Tutsi of Rwanda.

"Today's findings constitute vindication for Rwanda's long-held position on the circumstances surrounding events of April 1994", Louise Mushikiwabo, Foreign Minister and Government Spokesperson said. "With this scientific truth, Judges Trévidic and Poux have slammed shut the door on the seventeen-year campaign to deny the genocide or blame its victims. It is now clear to all that the downing of the plane was a coup d'état carried by extremist Hutu elements and their advisors who controlled Kanombe Barracks."

For the people of Rwanda, today's report is viewed as the result of a high quality investigation, commissioned by French magistrates with impeccable credentials, and carried out by world-class experts. It clears those falsely accused of shooting down the plane and brings a decisive end to the lies and conspiracy theories that have, for far too long, tried to divert the world's attention from the actual authors of horrendous crimes that took place in Rwanda during the genocide.

Minister Mushikiwabo concluded:

"Rwandans welcome the findings that shed more light on a vital part of our country's history.  We continue --undeterred and undistracted-- with the vital task of nation-building for generations to come."

SOURCE The Government of Rwanda