Brussels, 13 May 2008 (FH) - The official visit of new Rwandan Foreign Minister, Rosemary Museminali, last week to Belgium was cancelled because of the presence in her delegation of Joseph Nzabamwita, number two of exterior security wanted by Spanish justice, according to reports in the Belgian media.

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Nzabamwita is one of 40 Rwandans targeted by international arrest warrants issued on 6 February by Spanish Judge Fernando Abreu Merelles. Among them are 11 generals. Spanish justice accused these top-ranking officials of the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) of genocide, crimes against humanity and terrorism.

According to the Belgian authorities, Mrs. Museminali was alerted Wednesday by a verbal note that her visit has been cancelled.

"We did not have an official statement which explained the reasons", accord to the Belgian Foreign Ministry.

Sources, however, confirmed to the Hirondelle Agency that the reason for the cancellation was inclusion in the delegation of a person suspected to atrocities committed during the 1994 genocide. "Rwanda was informed of this risk because we did not want to create serious diplomatic incident", explained the source.

According to the newspaper "Le Soir", Belgium had denied visa to Mr. Nzabamwita. "It is not up to Belgium to decide the composition of a delegation invited to Brussels", strongly reacted Kigali, which affirms to refuse lessons of morality readily given by Belgium to African leaders.

© Hirondelle News Agency