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Rwanda: Grenade attacks in two locations in Kigali leaves one dead, four injured

April 11 2010
One person died and four others were injured last evening following grenade attacks in Kigali city. According to confirmed reports from the police spokesperson Supt. Eric Kayiranga, the attacks took place in Nyabugogo and Cyahafi areas of Kigali in a span of around thirty minutes.
The police spokesperson spoke to Radio Rwanda and said that they are yet to know who is behind the attacks adding that it may be caused by people who still want to destabilize national security or people who are still harboring small arms illegally.
According to police spokesperson Supt. Eric Kayiranga, the four that were injured sustained minor injuries and are reported to be in stable condition. The police however declined to give details of whether any arrests have been made in connection with the attacks.

Source: ORINFOR

April 11, 2010   No Comments

The Support Committee for UDF-Inkingi reiterates its support to Victoire Ingabire and the Interim Executive Committee

The Support Committee for UDF-INKINGI refutes malicious rumors of the Party Chairperson’s dismissal, Mrs Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza.

The New Times front page propaganda « Ingabire ousted in palace coup » issued on April 8th, is another hoax of its kind.

It rumored around that Mrs Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza, UDF-INKINGI Chairperson and Candidate to the upcoming August 2010 presidential elections, was fired by her party peers under cover of the Support Committee for UDF-INKINGI during a meeting that took place on April 4th, in Brussels.

The Support Committee categorically denies these baseless assumptions which aim at nothing else but destabilize the UDF-INKINGI political organization.

Support Committee members reassert their total confidence in Mrs Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza and reiterate their support for the Interim Executive Committee that was set up on the 12th of March, 2010.

Support Committee members attest their full solidarity with Rwandans inside the country who are weighed down by the current dictatorship and urge them to dismiss those “last times” rumors with all the contempt their authors deserve.

This fire-spitting partisan media is nothing else than a mirror of an exhausted regime advocating violence and heinous lies in order to thwart legitimate aspirations of the population : freedom, democracy, justice, equal opportunities and the rule of law.

Done in Brussels, April 8th, 2010

Eugene Ndahayo
President of the Support Committee for UDF-INKINGI

Version française:
Le Comité de Soutien des FDU-Inkingi dément les rumeurs de destitution de Mme Victoire Ingabire

April 11, 2010   No Comments

Rwanda: Who is the new Defence Minister Gen. James Kabarebe?

Gen. James Kabarebe: from aide-de-Camp to Defense Minister

Gen. James Kabarebe: from aide-de-Camp to Defense Minister

Major changes in the Army have been announced Saturday evening by President Paul Kagame. Gen. James Kabarebe has replaced Gen. Marcel Gatsinzi as Defense Minister.

The new Defense Minister is Gen. James Kabarebe – who has been the Chief of Defense Staff. Gen. Kabarebe is the fastest rising star in army ranks – up from President Kagame’s aide-de-camp in the rebel army, to the country’s Army chief in 2002.

For the new Defense Minister, Gen. James Kabarebe, 51, the sky has been the limit – where he has constantly risen up the ranks with the fastest pace so far. In the RPF rebel ranks, James Kabarebe, is said to have been private Secretary and aide-de-camp (ADC) of Major-General Paul Kagame.

When the rebels took power, Kabarebe was Commander of the High Command Unit at Mulindi. Later, this unit would become the ferocious Presidential Guard, when Major-General Paul Kagame, was Vice President and Defense Minister.

In 1996, Colonel Kabarebe was the commanding officer of the forces that invaded DR Congo (then Zaire) to hunt the extremist ex-army, where it is said he personally installed late Laurent Kabila as President of DRC. Interestingly, James Kabarebe became the Chief of Staff of the Congolese Army Forces (FAC) after Mzee Laurent Desire Kabila took power in the DRC in 1997.

A year later, Kabarebe, and indeed, Kigali, fell out with President Kabila (senior) – which was followed up by a second entry of Rwandan forces into DRC after DRC could not reign-in the Rwandan rebels accused on Genocide. Kabarebe was brought back home where he served in different posts – also rising to Brig. General, then Major General and Deputy Chief of Staff.

In October 2002, the Commander-in-Chief, President Kagame named Maj. Gen. Kabarebe as Chief of Defense Staff of what had been changed to the Rwanda Defense Forces (RDF), from Rwanda Patriotic Army. He replaced now-fugitive Lt. Gen. Faustin Kayumba Nyamwasa.

That did not seem like it was going to be the end for Maj. Gen. Kabarebe – the father of three, as he was actually promoted to full “General” along with his now ex-boss Gatsinzi. The changes came with the new army structure.

General Kabarebe is a holder of a BA in Economics and Political Science from Uganda’s Makerere University. He commissioned in 1989 – then in the Ugandan army.

[adapted from ARI-RNA]

April 11, 2010   2 Comments

Rwanda: Sacked Rwandan Defence Minister Gen. Marcel Gatsinzi still haunted by genocide accusations

General Marcel Gatsinzi in Gacaca court

General Marcel Gatsinzi in Gacaca court

Kigali: – President Paul Kagame announced major changes in the Army Saturday evening. Defense Minister Gen. Marcel Gatsinzi has lost his job and has been replaced by Gen. James Kabarebe.

The sacked Defense Minister Gen. Marcel Gatsinzi was named to the position in 2002 – at the same time as Gen. James Kabarebe was made army chief. Gen. Gatsinzi replaced exiled Maj. Gen. Bem Emmanuel Habyarimana.

However, along the way – Genocide accusations surfaced which have haunted Gen. Gatsinzi for years. He was acquitted of all charges in 2007 by a Gacaca court, but that was not enough not clear his name.

At the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), Colonel Theoneste Bagosora – considered the “brain” behind the Tutsi Genocide, Gen. Gatsinzi is wanted to give testimony. The Lower Court first called General Gatsinzi to the stand on September 11, 2006. However, the Minister would only testify on two conditions: first, that he would be a court witness rather than a witness of the Defence and, secondly, that he would be heard via videoconference. This was rejected and not followed upon.

The defendant has always objected that on April 7, 1994, the control of the Army was placed into the hands of General Gatsinzi, when he was appointed interim Chief of Staff in replacement of General Deogratias Nsabimana, who had been killed aboard President Habyarimana’s plane on April 6.

However, last month, the defense team of Colonel Bagosora’s raised the request again, claiming that he was deprived in his first trial of a “fundamental testimony” – that of General Marcel Gatsinzi.

Col. Bagosora is appealing against a life sentence for Genocide. In total, the 65 pages Defence memorandum contains six grounds for appeal and concludes on a request urging the judges to either “reverse the sentence and acquit the defendant” or “to order a new trial”.

[adapted from ARI-RNA]

April 11, 2010   1 Comment

Rwanda: Gen. James Kabarebe appointed new Minister of Defence

Gen. James Kabarebe, new Minister of Defence, replacing Gen. Marcel Gatsinzi

Gen. James Kabarebe, new Minister of Defence, replacing Gen. Marcel Gatsinzi

Kigali: Defense Minister Gen. Marcel Gatsinzi – with long-standing Genocide accusations still haunting him for years, has lost his job – in major changes in the Army announced Saturday evening by President Paul Kagame.

The army’s internal and external intelligence systems were affected as well.

The new minister is Gen. James Kabarebe – who has been the Chief of Defense Staff. Gen. Kabarebe is the fastest rising star in army ranks – up from President Kagame’s aide-de-camp in the rebel army, to the country’s Army chief in 2002.

The new army changes also see men that had become synonymous with the face of the country’s intelligence system removed from their jobs or moved to less sensitive areas, or thrown out with no new appointments. No reasons where given for the changes, made as the Rwanda continues with the Tutsi Genocide commemoration week.

In other changes, Lt. Gen. Charles Kayonga – who local media reports had claimed is under house arrest over a coup plot attempt, has been promoted to Chief of Defense Staff. He has been deputizing Gen. Kabarebe, and in charge of Land Forces.

The promotion of Lt. Gen. Kayonga clearly undermines widespread rumours that he was in serious trouble over allegations of planning to oust the commander-in-chief. President Kagame dismissed the rumours in his press conference last week, but did give any details.

The former long-serving boss of the Rwanda football league (FERWAFA), Maj. Gen. Ceaser Kayizari will take charge of the Land Forces. He has been the 3rd Division Commander based in Western Province.

Lt. Gen. Charles Muhire is now the Reserve Force Commander – a new arm of the army which has been in the works for sometime. The largely reclusive Lt. Gen Muhire has been heading the Airforce – where he has worked for several years.

The Airforce will now be headed by little-known Colonel Joseph Demari, who was actually promoted from the rank of Major before being given the top job. He will be the Acting Airforce Chief of Staff.

Brig. Gen. Jack Musemakweli has been moved from the Directorate of Military Intelligence (DMI or J2) to the Army’s political affairs department (J5). He was replaced by Lt. Col. Dan Munyuza – who was also promoted to Colonel.

Major Gatete Karuranga – promoted to Colonel, is the new Director General of External Intelligence. He was the Commanding Officer of Maintenance Battalion. Col. Karuhanga now replaces long-reining Colonel Rwakabi Kacyira, who is also husband to Kigali city Mayor Dr. Aissa Kirabo.
Related:

Rwanda: Who is the new Defence Minister Gen. James Kabarebe?

Rwanda: Sacked Rwandan Defence Minister Gen. Marcel Gatsinzi still haunted by genocide accusations.

[adapted from ARI-RNA]

April 11, 2010   3 Comments