Rwanda’s government has written to France requesting the extradition of a key suspect in the East African nation’s genocide a quarter-century ago, officials said Wednesday.
Maj. Gen. Aloys Ntiwiragabo, a former head of Rwanda’s military intelligence service, recently was found by a French media outlet to be living in the suburbs of Orleans.
Rwanda prosecution spokesman Justin Nkusi told The Associated Press that an international arrest warrant has been issued for Ntiwiragabo, who is under investigation in France over his role in the 1994 genocide in which more than 800,000 ethnic Tutsi, and Hutus who tried to protect them, were killed.
Rwanda’s government says the 71-year-old Ntiwiragabo was part of the inner circle of the former government that orchestrated the genocide. The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda describes him as one of the architects of the killings.
Rwandan prosecutor general Aimable Havugiyaremye told reporters in Kigali on Tuesday that the government is working with the French unit in charge of combating war crimes and crimes against humanity to investigate the case.
The extradition request for Ntawiragabo comes after another suspected architect of the genocide, Felicien Kabuga, was arrested outside Paris in May.
Kabuga, who had been hiding for 25 years, is accused of financing the genocide, which he denies.
Kabuga had asked for a trial in France, citing frail health and asserting that a trial in Africa would be biased against him. The court overturned his request, and he is due to be sent to the international tribunal in Arusha, Tanzania for trial.
The International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals chief prosecutor, Serge Brammertz, told reporters in Kigali on Tuesday that Kabuga could be transferred to Arusha next month.