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Rwandan Movement for Democratic Change (MRCD) MRCD-UBUMWE chairman Paul Rusesabagina speaks during a press conference of the political platform MRCD-UBUMWE and the political party RDI-EWANDA RWIZA, concerning the political and security situation in Rwanda, in Brussels, on June 18, 2019. (Photo by NICOLAS MAETERLINCK / various sources / AFP) / Belgium OUT (Photo credit should read NICOLAS MAETERLINCK/AFP via Getty Images)

Rwandan prominent opposition figure Rusesabagina arrested on terrorism charges

August 31, 2020

By Maniraguha Ferdinand

Rwandan Movement for Democratic Change (MRCD) MRCD-UBUMWE chairman Paul Rusesabagina speaks during a press conference of the political platform MRCD-UBUMWE and the political party RDI-EWANDA RWIZA, concerning the political and security situation in Rwanda, in Brussels, on June 18, 2019. (Photo by NICOLAS MAETERLINCK / various sources / AFP) / Belgium OUT        (Photo credit should read NICOLAS MAETERLINCK/AFP via Getty Images)
Rwandan Movement for Democratic Change (MRCD) MRCD-UBUMWE chairman Paul Rusesabagina speaks during a press conference of the political platform MRCD-UBUMWE and the political party RDI-EWANDA RWIZA, concerning the political and security situation in Rwanda, in Brussels, on June 18, 2019. (Photo by NICOLAS MAETERLINCK / various sources / AFP) / Belgium OUT (Photo credit should read NICOLAS MAETERLINCK/AFP via Getty Images)

Rwanda Investigation Bureau (RIB) has on Monday 31st August 2020 paraded in front of media Rusesabagina Paul, the prominent ‘Hotel Rwanda’ film hero who became an opposition figure.

Rusesabagina who was living in Belgium got prominence in 2004 after taking part in ‘Hotel Rwanda’, a film which depicts how he saved lives of Tutsis during the 1994 Genocide in Rwanda. Genocide took lives of more than million Tutsis.

Rusesabagina was then manager in Hotel des Milles Collines which in is in the center of capital Kigali.

RIB did not detail how Rusesabagina was arrested, however its spokesperson Dr Murangira Thierry said his arrest succeeded due to international cooperation.

“Rusesabagina is suspected to be the founder, leader, sponsor and member of violent, armed, extremist terror outfits including MRCD and PDR-Ihumure, operating out of various places in the region and abroad”,  RIB said in a statement.

Rusesabagina is a leader of Movement for Democratic changes in Rwanda, MRCD, a coalition of some opposition parties living in exile, with an aim of regime change in Kigali. MRCD has an army wing, National Liberation Forces, FLN that launched attacks on Rwanda since 2018.

“He has been subject of an International Arrest Warrant, wanted to answer charges of serious crime including terrorism, arson, kidnap and murder, perpetrated against unarmed, innocent Rwandan civilians on Rwandan territory including in Nyabimata – Nyaruguru district in June 2018 and in Nyungwe – Nyamagabe district in December 2018”, RIB added

The eloquent FLN spokesperson, Nsabimana Callixte known as Sankara was also arrested in mid last year from Comoros and was brought to face justice in Rwanda.

Due to his role in saving lives during genocide, Rusesabagina has received several human rights awards, including the US Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2005.

Kigali authorities refutes his heroism, urging that he used to solicit money from Tutsis who were hiding in Hotel des milles Collines in order to hide them.

Rusesabagina has never lived in Rwanda since 1996 after  surviving an assassination attempt.

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