Nyamata, Eastern Rwanda, 7 April, 2008(FH)-Rwanda will not accept to be trampled by western justice system, warned President Paul Kagame at the beginning of the week-long commemoration of Rwanda genocide at Nyamata, Bugesera district, reports Hirondelle Agency.

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"We'll not accept to be floored and trampled," stressed Kagame at the occasion.

The function was staged near the Nyamata Church, which has been site of some 39,856 burials since 1994 genocide.

On Monday, some 133 corpses discovered recently in the area were given a decent burial as part of the 14th anniversary.

President Kagame's remarks were apparently referring to recent indictments announced by the Spanish Judge, Fernando Andreu, against 40 former Rwanda Patriotic Front members for their alleged role during the 1994 genocide. Previously the French Judge Jean Louis Bruguiere indicted nine RPF members over the shooting down of the plane carrying former Rwandan President Juvenal Habyarimana on 6 April, 1994 near the capital, Kigali. Habyarimana was killed in the plane incident.

"How can a judge in France or Spain take the right to prosecute Rwandans who halted the genocide," he wondered, adding that what puzzles him was that whether stopping the genocide was a crime. "This is arrogance," added Kagame, underscoring that this [western justice] is unacceptable," instead, he said that those senior military officers were better placed to talk about human rights.

He wondered whether Africans can have an opportunity to try those who did wrong for them, adding that he would wish to pursue the issue with his other African colleagues over it.

Kagame criticized those saying that his government took advantage of genocide, saying: "it was an insult for Africans."

"People like us [who stopped genocide] are not the kind of people who will use genocide for anything," Kagme stressed. President Kagame concluded that Rwanda was a nation with its dignity...we'll ask nobody's favour."

This year's commemoration in Bugesera district is distinctive because of the history of the area and the extent of massacres which occurred there. According to Gaspard Musonera, Mayor of Bugesera, Nyamata was an inhospitable ground when ethnic Tutsis were exiled there to succumb to the tsetse flies and deadly wild animals in 1960s. Their massacres in 1963, 1964, 1967, 1973, and 1992, he adds, were an experiment for the genocide by the Rwandan state in preparation for the final phase in 1994. Bugesera is the embodiment of history of the genocide of Tutsis in Rwanda."

The UN estimates that about 800,000 ethnic Tutsis and moderate Hutus were killed in April-July 1994 slaughter.


© Hirondelle News Agency