Kigali, April 1, 2011(FH) - While praising President Nicolas Sarkozy for his efforts to improve bilateral relationship between the two states, Rwandan President Paul Kagame has strongly criticized Alain Juppé, new France minister for Foreign affairs, saying he " insulted" Rwandans.

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"His position, even involvement in matters relating to genocide
and the history of it here in Rwanda
are well known", said the president in his monthly press conference on

"He has not even attempted to rectify his negative stance in
such a situation," added President Kagame, who had been accusing some French
officials of participating in the 1994 genocide against Tutsis. He said that
Rwandans' view about him and his position "has not changed".

"I think Rwandans have been insulted by his attitude and
position and they are not short of ways to express themselves about this," he
said. Mr Juppé was French minister of Foreign Affairs during the genocide.

However, the president said Rwandans "were taking into
consideration the fact that there were positive trends in France starting
with the Head of State President Sarkozy". He praised Sarkozy's efforts to
leave the matter " behind in our part and to focus on moving
forward".  "His position is
well known and valued", Kagame stressed.

In its report released in 2008, A Rwandan commission of inquiry
concluded that Juppé was actively supporting the interim government which was
in power during the genocide.

President Sarkozy made an official visit in Rwanda in
February 2010, whose objective was to seal reconciliation between the two
countries. In November 2006, Rwanda
broke off diplomatic relations with France after its judiciary issued
arrest warrants against nine personalities of Kagame's entourage. The
diplomatic ties were restored in November 2009.

During his official visit, President Sarkozy had recognized that France had committed  "serious errors in Rwanda."


Hirondelle News Agency